7th ECPR General Conference
Sciences Po, Bordeaux
4th - 7th September 2013
Panel: Fragmentation and Integration in Global Climate Governance
Fariborz Zelli, Lund University
Sylvia Karlsson-Vinkhuyzen, Wageningen University and Research Center
The term fragmentation implies that policy domains are marked by a patchwork of institutions that differ in their character, constituencies, spatial scope, subject matter and objectives. Scholars have addressed this emerging phenomenon, framing it also with alternative concepts like ‘regime complex’ or ‘polycentric governance’.
While the degree of fragmentation varies across issue areas, global climate governance is a particular case in point. Its architecture is characterided by an advanced state of institutional fragmentation, including not only the UN climate regime, but also, for instance, green energy and low-carbon technology partnerships, other environmental institutions like the biodiversity regime, and non-environmental institutions like the World Trade Organization and the G20. Moreover, transnational and public-private institutions, e.g. on carbon disclosure and voluntary markets, have significantly added to this institutional diversity over the last ten years.
This development notwithstanding, we also witness aspects of an opposite ambition towards more integration, seeking to safeguard the prevalence of the global climate regime. This concerns inter alia the concentration on an established set of bodies to provide greenhouse gas inventories, or the recurring resistance to letting institutions outside the UNFCCC develop norms, or even discuss norms, on climate change.
In light of these different trends, many of the existing studies focus on the question whether a centralised or a polycentric climate architecture is preferable. However, the panel wants to go beyond such normative or functionalist debates, seeking to address some of the more pertinent analytical questions. We therefore invite papers that provide innovative conceptual and theory-based insights into the following aspects: What are appropriate ways to map or characterise the institutional complexity of global climate governance? What are potential causes of fragmentation and integration? Which consequences does fragmentation have, e.g. for aspects like legitimacy and institutional effectiveness? What are its consequences for different types of actors? And what are suitable and realistic management options to achieve more integration?
Paper proposals are highly welcome and can now be submitted (deadline of 1 February) through the ECPR website: http://new.ecprnet.eu/Events/PanelList.aspx?EventID=5&SectionID=75