Ozone Discourse: Science and Politics in Global Environmental Cooperation

Ozone Discourse: Science and Politics in Global Environmental Cooperation

by Karen T. Litfin
     
 

How can scientific knowledge be translated into political change? Ozone Discourse examines the first global environment treaty, the Montreal Protocol and its subsequent revisions, which was a highly effective collaboration among scientists, policymakers and activists.

The treaties were the work of a small group of experts who, without conventional

Overview

How can scientific knowledge be translated into political change? Ozone Discourse examines the first global environment treaty, the Montreal Protocol and its subsequent revisions, which was a highly effective collaboration among scientists, policymakers and activists.

The treaties were the work of a small group of experts who, without conventional political or economic resources, were able to persuade most of the world's nations to agree to reduce and then eliminate chlorofluorocarbons. These experts used their understanding of atmospheric science to supplement the policymakers' short-term perspective with a wider, intergenerational timeframe characteristic of global environmental problems.

Litfin argues that the discipline of international relations requires a broader conception of power in order to accomodate the knowledge-based problems such as environmental degradation.

Editorial Reviews

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Litfin does a very good job of setting out the way in which scientific discourse was used by the two primary opponents in the negotiation of the Montreal Protocol:.... Liftin's argument... is convincing.

Alternatives

Litfin does a very good job of setting out the way in which scientific discourse was used by the two primary opponents in the negotiation of the Montreal Protocol:.... Liftin's argument... is convincing.

Booknews
In a comprehensive history of ozone politics from its emergence in the 1970s to the second revision of the Montreal Protocol in 1992, Litfin (political science, U. of Washington) applies a Foucauldian equation of power and knowledge to the ozone debate, demonstrating how scientific knowledge can be used to gain political clout. Discourse theory is used to show how rival groups used the available body of scientific knowledge to frame the issue in light of their favored policy options. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780231081375
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Publication date:
01/05/1995
Series:
New Directions in World Politics Series
Pages:
257
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Karen Litfin is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Washington at Seattle. She teaches and writes on the environment in world politics; her primary interest is in the intersection of politics, science, and philosophy.

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