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The Institutional Dimensions of Environmental Change: Fit, Interplay, and Scale

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Overview

Researchers studying the role institutions play in causing and confronting environmental change use a variety of concepts and methods that make it difficult to compare their findings. Seeking to remedy this problem, Oran Young takes the analytic themes identified in the Institutional Dimensions of Global
Environmental Change (IDGEC) Science Plan as cutting-edge research concerns and develops them into a common structure for conducting research. He illustrates his arguments with examples of environmental change ranging in scale from the depletion of local fish stocks to the disruption of Earth's climate system.Young not only explores theoretical concerns such as the relative merits of collective-action and social-practice models of institutions but also addresses the IDGEC-identified problems of institutional fit, interplay, and scale. He shows how institutions interact both with one another and with the biophysical environment and assesses the extent to which we can apply lessons drawn from the study of local institutions to the study of global institutions and vice versa. He examines how research on institutions can help us to solve global problems of environmental governance.
Substantive topics discussed include the institutional dimensions of carbon management, the performance of exclusive economic zones, and the political economy of boreal and tropical forests.

The MIT Press

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher

"The book, written as part of the research program of the International
Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change, provides a rigorous theoretical roadmap for the study of institutions concerned with environment. The author analyzes difficult problems, such as the interactions between institutions that operate on different spatial scales and the fit (or misfit) between ecosystems and regimes. He links insights from theoretical research to the practical development of international institutions by offering a set of diagnostic tools to identify institutional deficiencies and design principles to remedy them. This excellent volume deserves to be read by a broad international audience."--Edith
Brown Weiss, Francis Cabell Brown Professor of International Law, Georgetown
University Law Center

The MIT Press

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Oran R. Young is Professor and Codirector of the Program on Governance for
Sustainable Development at the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management,
University of California, Santa Barbara, and Chair of the Scientific Committee of the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change,
sponsored by the International Council Of Science (ICSU), the International Social
Science Council (ISSC), and the United Nations University (UNU). He is the author of
The Institutional Dimensions of Environmental Change: Fit, Interplay, and
Scale
(2002) and coeditor (with Leslie A. King and Heike Schroeder) of
Institutions and Environmental Change: Principal Findings, Applications,
and Research Frontiers
(2008), both published by the MIT Press.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
I Concepts and Models 1
1 Environmental Change: Institutional Drivers, Institutional Responses 3
2 Collective-Action Models versus Social-Practice Models 29
II Analytic Frontiers 53
3 Fit: Matching Ecosystem Properties and Regime Attributes 55
4 Vertical Interplay: The Consequences of Cross-Scale Interactions 83
5 Horizontal Interplay: The Politics of Institutional Linkages 111
6 Scale: Addressing Local and Global Environmental Challenges 139
III Analysis and Praxis 163
7 Usable Knowledge: Design Principles and Institutional Diagnostics 165
Notes 191
References 197
Index 211
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