Environmental Policy and Governance
Environmental issues offer an excellent platform to explore issues of governance because they bear upon public goods provision, common-pool resource appropriation, and collective action challenges. Environmental problems differ in their scope, scale, complexity, and severity. While governmental regulations remain the main vehicle for supplying environmental governance across the globe, in the last two decades, a host of new institutional mechanisms have emerged. These include market-based mechanisms, information-based policies such as eco-labels, and voluntary programs. Alongside governments, businesses and NGOs have emerged as important institutional actors in sponsoring these new mechanisms. International and regional regimes are also playing an important role in environmental governance. How individuals, communities, and organizations respond to environmental challenges depends on many factors including their personal and community characteristics, collective action issues, and the political, economic, and social institutions in which they are embedded. This course will explore the role of different actors (governments, intergovernmental regimes, firms, and NGOs) across different types of environmental challenges (such as climate change and environmental equity) and scales (local, national, regional and global), in structuring environmental governance. Environmental issues are examined across disciplines and hopefully this course will allow you to develop a holistic, social science perspective on environmental governance that draws on insights from multiple disciplines.
Taught by Aseem Prakash, lead on the center for environmental politics. http://faculty.washington.edu/aseem/blogs.html