ES334. International Environmental Regimes



Tue-Thu, 2:30-3:45, Olin 234

Professor Liliana B. Andonova 

Miller 258; x5312

Office hours:

T: 8:45-10:15am, TH: 3:45-5:15pm

& by appointment       


The course explores the politics of international environmental cooperation. It asks under what conditions have states been able to cooperate and establish international regimes to improve the global environment? Topics include negotiation of, compliance with, and effectiveness of international environmental treaties; sustainable development; trade and environment; international financial institutions; and the role of non-state actors. The course is structured as a mixture of lecture and discussion. It is important that students do all the readings prior to class meetings.



Class attendance and participation: 10%

Critical essay: 10%

Midterm exam 1: 20%

Midterm exam 2: 20%

Final project presentation: 10%

Final paper: 30%

Critical Essay: Each student should write one short essay of 3-5 pages on one (or several) of the assigned readings. Essays are due by 9am on the day of the class for which the reading is assigned. Students would also be asked to lead a short discussion in class on the readings and the argument they made in the critical paper.


Final Project:  Research Paper and Web Page on International Environmental Regimes


The research paper (15-20 pgs) can be on any topic related to international environmental cooperation. It should be organized around a clear research question, should draw on concepts and debates covered in the class, and should use empirical evidence to advance our understanding of these concepts and issues. You may choose, for example, to examine the role of a particular actor (states, NGOs, business organizations), the effectiveness of a particular regimes, or broader debates related to environmental governance. It is often helpful to identify a puzzle or variation in policy outcomes you wish to explain. Note that evidence of plagiarism (including copying and pasting of text from the web) will result in a failing grade for the course.


The web page should present the central topic or concept(s) of you research paper. It would contain a link to the executive summary of your paper and selected research links. It should not aim at a comprehensive presentation of you argument or research. The Internet is a relatively new research resource. It has some obvious advantages. Significant amounts of information can be accessed fast and mostly free of charge, including legislation, official documents, and data. There are also negative sides to the Internet: information overload, lack of effective screening of the quality of information, sometimes publication of offensive material. Students should, therefore, use their best judgment and prior knowledge on environmental regimes in locating and using web information. When navigating the web it is NOT a good idea to give out personal information as we do not know how this information is used.


Final projects will be presented in groups of several students covering related topics (schedule will be assigned by instructor). One project presentation grade (10% of the class grade) will be assigned to the students within each group. This is a course about cooperation, so it is important for students to demonstrate what they have learned about overcoming collective action problems and cooperating to achieve mutually beneficial results. Individual, easy to navigate web pages will get extra credit.


The objectives of the final project are: 1) to develop solid research on topics of environmental cooperation; 2) to develop effective skills in using the Internet for research and presentation; 3) to demonstrate presentation skills.  

Required Texts:

Conca, Ken and Geoffrey Dabelko, eds. 2004.  Green Planet Blues.  Third edition.  Boulder, CO: Westview Press.


Strunk, W. and White, E.B. 1999. The Elements of Style. Allyn and Bacon.


Reserve readings (R) – available on electronic reserve at Miller.




Class Schedule


Sept 8



I. Concepts and Methods


 Sept 13

Environmental Problems and International Regimes

Green Planet Blues: Tragedy of the Commons (Hardin); No Tragedy of the Commons (Buck)


Porter, G., Janet Welsh Brown, and Pamela S. Chasek, eds.  2000. Global Environmental Politics.  Third edition.  Boulder, CO: Westview Press. Chapter 1 (Emergence of Global Environmental Politics), p.1-34. R


Haas, P., Levy, M. and Keohane, R. 1993.  Institutions for the Earth: Sources of Effective International Environmental Protection. Cambridge: MIT Press, chapter 1, p.397-426. R


Sept 15

Sustainable Development

Green Planet Blues: Introduction to part V (The Sustainability Debate); Towards Sustainable Development (World Commission on Environment and Development), How Much is Enough? (Durning), Whose Common Future? (Lohmann), Sustainable Development: A Critical Review (Lélé)


Stern, D., Common, M. and Barbier, E. 1996.  “Economic Growth and Environmental Degradation:  The Environmental Kuznets Curve and Sustainable Development.” World Development, 24:7, 1151-1160. [Online Reading]


Levy, M. 2002.  “Measuring Nations’ Environmental Sustainability.”  Environmental Performance Measurement:  The Global Report 2001-2002. R


Sept 20

Research Question and Methods

King, Gary, Keohane, R. and Verba, S. 1998. Designing Social Inquiry. Princeton University Press, 1-33. R


Lijphart, A. Comparative Politics and the Comparative Method.” American Political Science Review, v. 65, pp. 682-691. R


Strunk, W. and White, E.B. 1999. The Elements of Style. Allyn and Bacon


One paragraph proposal for research topic due in class!


Sept 22

The Global Summits

Green Planet Blues: Three Decades of Global Environmental Politics (the editors); Perspective on the Johannesburg Summit (Speth); Excerpt from The Jo’Burg Memo: Fairness in a Fragile World.


French, Hilary et al. 2005. “Laying the Foundations for Peace.” In State of the World. Redefining Global Security. Report by the Worldwatch Institute, pp.160-180. R 




II. Inter-Governmental Regimes


Sept 27

Ozone Depletion

Parson, Edward. 2003 Protecting the ozone layer: science and strategy. Oxford , NY: Oxford University Press. Chapter 9. R 


Optional: Parson, Edward A. 1996. “International Protection of the Ozone Layer.” Green Globe Yearbook, p. 19-28. R  [Online Reading]

Sept 29

Acid Rain

John McCormick. 1998. “Acid Pollution. The International Community’s Continuing Struggle.” Environment, 40:3, p. 16. [Online Reading]


Jorgen Wettestad. 2002. Clearing the Air. Europe Tackles Transboundary Pollution.” Environment, 44:2, p. 32. [Online Reading]


Willemnijn Tuinstra, Leen Hordijk, and Markus Amann. 1999. “Using Computer Models in International Cooperation.” Environment, 44:9, p. 32. [Online Reading]


Oct 4


Andersen, Steiner. 1998. “The Making and Implementation f Whaling Policies: Does Participation Make a Difference.” In Victor, David G., Kal Raustiala, and Eugene B. Skolnikoff, eds. Implementation and Effectiveness of International Environmental Commitments: Theory and Practice. Cambridge: MIT Press, p. 431-474. R 


Kristof, Nicholas. 2003. “Whale on the Table.” The New York Times, September 17, 2003, Wednesday, Late Edition – Final, A 27. Search Lexis-Nexus at



Oct 6

Midterm 1


Oct 11

Spring Break


Oct 13

Climate Change

Barrett, Scott. 2003. Environment and Statecraft: the Strategy of Environmental Treaty. Chapter 15: Global Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol.” P. 359-398. New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 2003.


International Energy Agency. 2002. “What Happened in Bonn? The Nuts and Bolts of an Historic Agreement.” PP. 1-12. R


Joyeeta Gupta and Michael Grubb, eds. 2000. Climate change and European leadership: a sustainable role for Europe. Boston: Kluwer Academic. Chapter 16 (Implementing European Leadership, 287-311).  R


Anil Agarwal and Sunita Narain. 1991 “Global Warming in an Unequal World: A Case of Environmental Colonialism.” Earth Island Journal, spring 1991, 39-40. R [Online Reading]


James Brooke. 2003. “Hybrids are the Stars at Tokyo’s Show.” New York Times, November 5, 2003, W1. Search Lexis-Nexus at:


Recommended: Richard Benedick. 2001. “Striking a New Deal on Climate Change.” Issues in Science and Technology, fall 2001, 18, 1, p.71-76. R [Online Reading]


Oct 18

View After the Warming


Oct 20

Biodiversity Regimes

McGraw, Désirée M. (2002). "The CBD - Key Characteristics and Implications for Implementation." RECIEL 11(1): 17-28; R [Online Reading] Note: the link takes you to the journal, you have to open 2002, 11(1), then the PDF article.


Curlier, Maaria, and Steiner Andersen. 2002. International Trade in Endangered Species: the CITES Regime. In Miles, Edward et al. Environmental Regime Effectiveness. Confronting Theory and Evidence. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. R



III. Non-State Actors and Environmental Regimes


Oct 25

Advocacy Organizations

Final selection of research topics due in class!


Green Planet Blues: Introduction to Part II; Kenya’s Green Militant: An interview with Wangari Muta Maathai (UNESCO Courier), Think Locally, Act Globally? The Transnationalization of Canadian Resource-Use Conflicts (Barker & Soyez), Politics Beyond the State: Environmental Activism and World Civic Politics (Wapner); Coercing Conservation (Peluso) 


Check and come prepared to comment on the website of one transnational or local NGO.


Oct 27

Web-page creation and design session. Room number: TBA.


A course template will be provided for the assigned class project. Students with laptops should bring them.


Nov 1

Amazon Deforestation

Green Planet Blues: Rethinking the Ecology-Sovereignty Debate (Conca), Fight for the Forest (Mendes), Two Agendas on Amazon Development (COICA) 


Keck, M. and Sikkink, K. 1998.   Activists Beyond Borders. Advocacy Networks in International Politics.  Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Chapter 4, p.121-163. R


Nov 3

Business and the Environment

One page outline of research topics due in class.


Green Planet Blues: Walking the Talk: The Business Case for Sustainable Development (









































Garcia-Johnson, R. 2000.  Exporting Environmentalism. US Multinational Chemical Corporations in Brazil and Mexico. Cambridge: MIT Press, chapter 1, p. 1-25. R


Shell. 2002. Meeting the Energy Challenge. The Shell Report 2002. R


Richard Boele1, Heike Fabig, and David Wheeler. 2001. Shell, Nigeria, and the Ogoni. A Study in Unsustainable Development: I. The Story of Shell, Nigeria an the Ogoni People – environment, economy, relationships: conflict and prospects for resolution, Sustainable Development 9:2. 74-86. R


Waldman, Amy. Bhopal Seethes, Pained and Poor 18 Years.” New York Times, 9/12.02.

Search Lexis-Nexus at


Nov 8

Public-Private Partnerships and Certification

Assignment for group presentations by instructor


Green Planet Blues: A Participatory Approach to Strategic Planning (Bissell) 


Liliana B. Andonova and Marc A. Levy (2003), ‘Franchising Global Governance: Making Sense of the Johannesburg Type II Partnerships’, Yearbook of International Co-operation on Environment and Development 2003/2004 (London: Earthscan Publications), 19–31. R


Gereffi, Gary, Ronie Garcia-Johnson, et al. (2001). "The NGO-Industrial Complex." Foreign Policy: 56-65. R [Online Reading] 


Clapp. J. 1998.  “The Privatization of Global Environmental Governance: ISO 1400 and the Developing World.” Global Governance 4 (1998) 295-316. R


Check and come prepared to comment on the website of one transnational partnership or certification institution.


Nov 10

Scientific communities

Haas, P.  1989.  "Do regimes matter?  Epistemic Communities and Mediterranean Pollution Control."  International Organization, 43, 3: 377-403.  R [Online Reading]


Biermann, F.  2001.  "Big Science, Small Impacts in the South?  The Influence of Global Environmental Assessments on Expert Communities in India."  Global Environmental Change 11, 297-309. R [Online Reading]


Masood, Ehsan. 1998. “Biodiversity Body Needs More Science.” Nature, 391, 215. R



IV. Globalization and Environmental Regimes


Nov 15

Trade and the Environment

Green Planet Blues: Stuck in the Mud? Nation-States, Globalization, and Environment (Zarsky), Presentation to the WTO Symposium (Juniper), Environment and the Trading System: Picking up the Post-Seattle Pieces (Esty) 


Jagdish Bahwati.  1993. The Case for Free Trade. Scientific American. (November 1993), 42-49. R

[Online Reading]


Daly, Herman. 1993. The Perils of Free Trade.” Scientific American. (November 1993), 50-57. R

[Online Reading]


Recommended: Wheeler, David. 2000.  "Racing to the Bottom?  Foreign Investment and Air Pollution in Developing Countries." Journal of Environment and Development, 10:3, 225-245. [Online Reading]


Nov 17

European Union and the Environment

Alberta M. Sbragia. 2000. Environmental Policy. In Wallace, Helen and William Wallace, eds. Policy Making in the European Union. Fourth Edition. Oxford.University Press. R 


Jonas Tallberg. “Paths to Compliance: Enforcement, Management, and the European Union.” International Organization, 56: 3, 609 – 643 R  [Online Reading]


Andonova, Liliana. 2005. “The Europeanization of Environmental Policy in Central and Eastern Europe.” In Schimmelfennig et al. The Europeanization of Central and Eastern Europe. Cornell University Press, pp 135-156. R


Nov 22

Midterm 2

Nov 24

Thanksgiving Break

Nov 29

International Financial Institutions

Green Planet Blues: Introduction to Part IV; World Bank’s Environmental Reform Agenda (Seymour & Dubash), Expanding the Capital Stock (Serageldin & Steer),Report and Findings on the Qinghai Project (World Bank Inspection Panel). 


Connolly, Barbara; Keohane, Robert O. 1996. Institutions for environmental aid: Politics lessons and opportunities. Environment, 38:5, p. 12. [Online Reading]



Dec 1

Environment and Security

Green Planet Blues: Part VI


Conca, Carius, and Dabelko. 2005. “Building Peace Through Environmental Cooperation.” State of the World. Redefining Global Security. A report by the World Watch Institute; W.W. Norton & Company. 144-158. R 


Review French et al. 2005 from Sept 22.

Dec 6

Student Presentations

Dec 8

Student Presentations