Profile image of Samantha Hepburn

Prof Samantha Hepburn



Professor (Property Law)


Faculty of Business and Law


BL Law


Melbourne Burwood Campus


Doctor of Philosophy, University of Melbourne, 2006
Master of Laws, University of Melbourne, 1995
Bachelor of Law(s), Monash University, 1990



Samantha Hepburn is a Professor at the School of Law, Deakin University.  Previously, she was an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law at the Australian National University.  Samantha teaches and researches in the area of property and land law, as well as mining, energy and environmental law and has published books and articles in these areas.  Samantha has a strong research interest in unconventional gas  regulation in Australia and is also examining the regulatory development of carbon capture sequestration both in Australia and internationally.

Read more on Samantha's profile

Career highlights

Panel Member: Unconventional Gas in Victoria Winchelsea Otway Tourism, May 2014

Presentation: International Natural Gas and Fracking Conference: Sydney

Presentation: MC for AGS and NAIDOC Week

Presentation: Global Carbon Capture Frameworks: World Bank Global Partner Initiatives

Media: Radio National: Expansion of CSG in Australia

Media: Background research for CSG Focus: Four Corners

Research interests

Professor Samantha Hepburn has published extensively in the area of property and land law, native title law, natural resource management, mining and energy law and environmental law.  She has a strong interest in developing an appropriate regulatory framework for the progression of coal seam gas and shale gas projects within Australia, and particularly Victoria.  She is currently involved in a major project examining the impact of unconventional gas upon local communities with respect to land access, compensation and environmental management.  Samantha is also currently writing a comprehensive book on Mining and Energy Law in Australia for Cambridge University Press.  Samantha's other text, Australian Property Law: Cases, Materials and Analysis is a seminal text in the area and is currently in its third edition, being prescribed at law schools across the country.  Samantha has published scholarly articles in her areas of research in both Australia and the United States.

Teaching interests

Mining and Energy Law

Property Law

Land Law

Native Title

Equity and Trusts

Units taught

MLL316 Mining and Energy Law

MLL405 Equity and Trusts

MLL327 Property Law

Knowledge areas

Mining and Energy Law

Native Title

Property and Land Law

Environmental Law

Natural Resource Management

Unconventional Gas Regulation

Trust law


The Promised Land: The Future of Coal Seam Gas in Australia: Exploring the Social, Environmental and Regulatory Issues of Coal Seam Gas in Australia, November, 2013

Media appearances

Winchelsea Otway Tourism: Panel Member: Unconventional Gas in Victoria Wednesday May 28th, 2014 with Jon Faine Moderating: CSIRO, Australian Institute, Lakes Oil and Monash University Health.

My conversation pieces can be found at:


See also:

• Coal Seam Gas Mining in Australia: An Adaptive Future 2013  Vol 7 (1) Australian Resources and Investment 124-125.

• Environmental Assessment of Coal Seam Gas Lacks Scientific Back-Up, The Conversation, 17th April, 2013

• Federal Governments Control of Coal Seam Gas a Welcome Relief, The Conversation 13 March, 2013

• Background Research support for Connie Agius, for Monday April 1st Four Corners Program on Coal Seam Gas in Australia

• Coal Seam Gas Expansion: Social and Environmental Consequences, RightNow Human Rights in Australia online Journal, 1 September 2012.

• Sustainable Development the Key to CGS, ATSE Focus 173 (Australian Technology, Engineering and Science) at p.42, August 2012.

• Australian Science Media Centre: Interactive Media Presentation for CSG Regulation, July 2012.

• States grappling with coal seam gas regulations: Radio Interview, Deakin Matters - 94.7 The Pulse, May 2012.

• CSG and the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999 (Cth), Radio National Interview, April 2012.

• States grappling with coal seam gas regulations" discussion on Radio National's Bush Telegraph Wednesday 14 March 2012.

• Who Owns NSW CBM Gas, Natural Gas Daily, Volume 2, 86 at p. 8, May, 2012.

Who Owns Coal Seam Gas in New South Wales and Who Can Stop it Being Mined (This article was republished in the Northern Rivers Echo on 31 May 2012).

• National Coal Seam Gas Agreement: An Important Step in Protecting Water, March 2012.


2013-2014 Projects:

Towards a New Regulatory framework for Unconventional gas in Australia - Land Access, Compensation and Environmental Management

A Comparative International Model of Carbon Capture Sequestration (To be published in the Environmental Reporter (United States)

The Impact of CSG on Native Title Interests in Australia


Filter by


Public resource ownership and community engagement in a modern energy landscape

S Hepburn

(2017), Vol. 34, pp. 101-144, Pace environmental law review, New York, N.Y., C1


Intensity and authenticity: the duty to give real and genuine consideration in the context of superannuation trusts

S Hepburn

(2016), Vol. 22, pp. 406-415, Trusts & trustees, Oxford, Eng., C1


Statutory intrepretation and native title extinguishment: Expanding constructional choices

S Hepburn

(2015), Vol. 38, pp. 586-616, University of New South Wales law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


The implications of the Victorian Gas Market Taskforce report on unconventional gas development in Victoria

S Hepburn

(2014), Vol. 29, pp. 17-20, Australian environment review, Chatswood, N.S.W., C1


Ownership models for geological sequestration: a comparison of the emergent regulatory models in Australia and the United States

S Hepburn

(2014), Vol. 44, pp. 10310-10325, Environmental law reporter, Washington, DC, C1


The senseless war : the sentencing drug offenses arms race

M Bagaric, S Hepburn, L Xynas

(2014), Vol. 16, pp. 101-145, Oregon review of international law, Eugene, Or., C1


The nature and scope of rights of removal

S Hepburn, S Jaynes

(2013), Vol. 2, pp. 123-138, Property law review, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


Does unconventional gas require unconventional ownership? An analysis of the functionality of ownership frameworks for unconventional gas development

S Hepburn

(2013), Vol. 8, pp. 1-54, Pittsburgh journal of environmental and public health law, Pittsburgh, Pa., C1


Native title rights in the territorial sea and beyond: exclusivity and commerce in the Akiba decision

S Hepburn

(2011), Vol. 34, pp. 159-181, University of New South Wales law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


Native title in coastal and marine waters

S Hepburn

(2011), pp. 296-321, Australian coastal and marine law, Annandale, N. S. W., B1


Statutory verification of water rights: the 'insuperable' difficulties of propertising water entitlements

S Hepburn

(2010), Vol. 19, pp. 1-22, Australian property law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


Carbon rights as new property: the benefits of statutory verification

S Hepburn

(2009), Vol. 31, pp. 239-271, Sydney law review, Rozelle, N.S.W., C1


Interpretive strategies in the overriding legislation exception to indefeasibility

S Hepburn

(2009), Vol. 21, pp. 86-106, Bond law review, Gold Coast, Qld., C1


Defeudalization: towards a pluralist land system in New Zealand

S Hepburn

(2007), Vol. 36, pp. 136-165, Common law world review, Dalby, Isle of Man, C1-1


Reconsidering the scope of the equitable mortgage arising from deposit of title documents

S Hepburn

(2006), Vol. 80, pp. 121-130, Australian law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


Transforming customary title to individual title: revisiting the cathedral

S Hepburn

(2006), Vol. 11, pp. 63-88, Deakin law review, Geelong, Vic, C1


Discourse of conscience in the assessment of voluntary assignments in equity

S Hepburn

(2006), Vol. 1, pp. 117-134, Journal of equity, Chatswood, N.S.W., C1-1


Feudal tenure and native title: revising an enduring fiction

S Hepburn

(2005), Vol. 27, pp. 49-86, Sydney law review, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


Disinterested truth: legitimation of the doctrine of tenure post-Mabo

S Hepburn

(2005), Vol. 29, pp. 1-38, Melbourne University law review, Melbourne, Vic., C1


Reconsidering the benefits of equitable classification

S Hepburn

(2005), Vol. 12, pp. 157-168, Australian property law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1


Funded Projects at Deakin

Other Public Sector Funding

Draft Audit Performance Report Unconventional Gas

Prof Samantha Hepburn

  • 2014: $12,272


Principal Supervisor

Matthew Storey

Thesis entitled: Factors Affecting the Efficacy of the Commonwealth¿s Indigenous Business Exemption

Doctor of Business Administration, Department of Management

Associate Supervisor

Siyu Christina Tao

Thesis entitled: Assessment and Theories of China¿s Compliance with WTO in Financial Services

Doctor of Philosophy, Law