It is Not as Bad as it Looks: Comparing Countries' Cooperation on Climate Change Inside and Outside the UNFCCC Negotiations

Kammerer, Marlene; Castro, Paula (10 April 2019). It is Not as Bad as it Looks: Comparing Countries' Cooperation on Climate Change Inside and Outside the UNFCCC Negotiations (Unpublished). In: ECPR Joint Session, Workshop "Networked Environmental Politics: New Approaches to New Challenges". Université catholique de Louvain, Mons, Belgium. 08.04.-12.04.2019.

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Given the global nature of climate change, prevalent free-riding incentives, and ongoing contestations between the Global South and North, understanding the factors that foster international cooperation in this field is crucial. The negotiations around the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) are the main forum in which global agreements to fight climate change are debated. However, given that the slow pace of the negotiations is at odds with the urgency of addressing climate change, it is hoped that less publicized bi- or multilateral channels of cooperation can offer momentum to actual mitigation or adaptation initiatives on the ground. In this paper, we seek to gain a more systematic understanding of the interlinkages between the way countries interact inside the UNFCCC negotiations and the way they cooperate on climate-related issues through other diplomatic channels, for example by establishing other bi- or multilateral agreements, exchanging resources, or sharing information. For example, outside cooperation may help to pave the way for more successful negotiations. In this case, we should see that more cooperative UNFCCC meetings tend to follow a period of increased diplomatic cooperation outside. To explore these patterns, we rely on two novel datasets. The first one records agreements and disagreements between country dyads at the negotiations, hand-coded from summaries of the negotiations published between 1995 and 2013 in the Earth Negotiations Bulletin. The second one is based on automated text coding of press releases from Agence France Press and contains information on cooperative and conflictive diplomatic interactions between country dyads outside the negotiations between 1995 and 2015. We use a combination of descriptive statistics and dynamic social network analysis to investigate the data.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Political Science
10 Strategic Research Centers > Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR)

UniBE Contributor:

Kammerer, Marlene


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science




Jack Kessel Baker

Date Deposited:

24 Apr 2020 17:50

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:37




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