International Environmental Governance
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Division: University-wide Programs
Department: Global Studies
Course Number: UGLB 4620
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
International environmental issues are quintessential public policy issues, due to the fact that so many environmental problems are “common pool resources” (such as air or water) that are transboundary, lack economic incentive to regulate, and require a collective and collaborative decision making instrument. In this course, we will analyze and discuss the effectiveness of the current international environmental regime; a non-binding voluntary mechanism, (often signed but not ratified), that has been structured around solving the problem of climate change. We will also examine the earliest international environmental treaties, (the UN Law of the Seas), and focus on the last 20 years since the Rio Earth Summit. Simultaneously, we will focus on local case studies, such as natural resource conflicts that have become human rights hotspots in the developing world. Solving environmental problems often involves comparing international modes of environmental management. On a socio-cultural level, we will discuss the motivations and ethos that lead to progressive policy behaviors in other parts of the world; such as Bolivia’s formation of the Law of Mother Earth and Europe’s clash with the World Trade Organization over genetically modified foods. We will also explore the roots of American environmentalism and discuss its cultural impact and effectiveness when exported all around the world.
Open to Undergraduate students.