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Ideology and non-state climate action: partnering and design of REDD+ projects

Benjamin M. Abraham ()
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Benjamin M. Abraham: University of Oxford, Radcliffe Observatory Quarter

International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, 2021, vol. 21, issue 4, No 7, 669-690

Abstract: Abstract Scholars and policymakers working on non-state climate action have tended to focus on functional considerations, largely neglecting questions of ideology. This article brings them into the spotlight by investigating how ideology affects climate action initiatives. Based on a new database of 389 projects associated with reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, the article examines how ideology affects project design and partnering. A quantitative analysis and four case studies of projects in Colombia and Peru show how environmental ideology shapes the preferences of project developers for project designs and partners. Two mechanisms that underlie this are also derived. The findings show how a focus on ideology can help open the black box of climate action initiatives and explain their substantive variation. They also offer insights into the ideological implications of the transnationalization of climate governance. Non-state climate action at once entrenches the neoliberal ideological status quo of climate politics and offers critical ideologies a foothold. This poses risks for the future effectiveness and legitimacy of non-state climate action and should be considered in the design of the emerging institutional architecture that supports it. This article also sets a platform for and outlines the contours of a future research agenda on ideology in climate action.

Keywords: Climate change; Climate action; Non-state; REDD+; Ideology; Projects (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1007/s10784-021-09537-4

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