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Managing Institutional Complexity

Regime Interplay and Global Environmental Change

Edited by Sebastian Oberthür and Olav Schram Stokke

Publication Year: 2011

Experts investigate how states and other actors can improve inter-institutional synergy and examine the complexity of overlapping environmental governance structures.

Published by: The MIT Press

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. vii-ix

During the preparation of the Science Plan for the long-term project on the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change (IDGEC) in 1997 and 1998, we spent a lot of time discussing what emerged as the project’s analytical themes, or the set of topics we deemed ripe for a major research push...

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pp. xi-xii

This book is the youngest offspring of the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change (IDGEC) project. IDGEC was a core project of the International Human Dimensions Programme of Global Environmental Change (IHDP) from 1998 to 2007. It has since been succeeded by the...

List of Abbreviations

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pp. xiii-xvi

1. Introduction: Institutional Interaction in Global Environment Change

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pp. 1-23

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2. Institutional Interaction: Ten Years of Scholarly Development

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pp. 25-58

Since the development of the Institutional Dimensions of Global Environmental Change (IDGEC) Science Plan in 1998 (Young et al. 1999/2005), institutional interaction has become an important subject of inquiry. The Science Plan served to put institutional interaction on the agenda of global change research...

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3. Legal and Political Approaches in Interplay Management: Dealing with the Fragmentation of Global Climate Governance

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pp. 59-85

This chapter focuses on ways of dealing with the fragmentation of international regimes on climate change and the subsequent interactions among them. It assesses various means of interplay management with a view to enhancing synergy and mitigating conflict between regimes in this issue area...

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4. Savings Clauses and the “Chilling Effect”: Regime Interplay as Constraints on International Governance

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pp. 87-114

The situations that environmental treaties address are necessarily linked to other policy fields, such as trade and human rights. Recent research suggests that environmental treaties are weakened by multilateral trade rules that address related issues (Conca 2000; Eckersley 2004; Stilwell and Tuerk...

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5. Managing Policy Contradictions between the Montreal and Kyoto Protocols: The Case of Fluorinated Greenhouse Gases

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pp. 115-141

The international regimes for the protection of the ozone layer and for combating climate change have been at the forefront of global environmental governance since the mid-1980s. The ozone regime is based on the 1985 Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer and its 1987 Montreal Protocol...

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6. Interplay Management, Niche Selection, and Arctic Environmental Governance

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pp. 143-170

This chapter develops and applies a framework for analyzing strategic interplay management decisions on specialization and division of labor within larger institutional complexes. The framework identifies several institutional niches, or governance tasks, that an institution may focus on within the broader...

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7. The Role of Expert Networks in Reducing Regime Conflict: Contrasting Cases in the Management of Plant Genetic Resources

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pp. 171-198

A prominent example of institutional interplay is the disruption that has arisen among international institutions dealing with the conservation and use of genetic resources. Property rights to genetic resources are regulated by various international agreements that address the issue from different perspectives and with...

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8. Regime Conflicts and Their Management in Global Environmental Governance

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pp. 199-226

Research on institutional interplay looks beyond the confines of a single institution, seeking to grasp its synergetic or disruptive interactions with other regimes or organizations. Despite the inherent centrality of institutional environments, however, most theoretical approaches stop short of considering the deeper...

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9. The Institutional Complex of Trade and Environment: Toward an Interlocking Governance Structure and a Division of Labor

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pp. 227-254

This chapter examines the dynamics of the institutional complex of trade and the environment. The relationship between the world trade system and the numerous multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) with trade restrictions is difficult. These institutions do not operate in isolation from each other...

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10. UNCLOS, Property Rights, and Effective Fisheries Management: The Dynamics of Vertical Interplay

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pp. 255-283

The Third United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS III) yielded one of the most profound institutional changes to global environmental governance during the twentieth century. It converted a vast swath of oceanic space from a global commons to a regime characterized by 200-mile exclusive...

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11. Interplay Management in the Climate, Energy, and Development Nexus

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pp. 285-312

The importance of integrating the three pillars of sustainable development — economic, social, and environmental — has been underscored in virtually every global policy process since the Brundtland Report was published in 1987. Even during the 1980s it was realized that environmental policies...

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12. Conclusions: Decentralized Interplay Management in an Evolving Interinstitutional Order

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pp. 313-341

This book has focused on two themes central to institutional interaction: interplay management and institutional complexes. The contributions to this volume have addressed one or both of these issues by exploring various fields of international environmental governance, frequently investigating changes...

List of Contributors

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pp. 343


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pp. 345-353

E-ISBN-13: 9780262298346
Print-ISBN-13: 9780262516242

Page Count: 376
Publication Year: 2011

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Environmental policy -- International cooperation.
  • Climatic changes -- International cooperation.
  • Global warming -- International cooperation.
  • Environmental law, International.
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