Online Event: A Turning Point for International Climate Policy?

On May 13, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. EDT, the American Academy of Political and Social Science will host an online seminar, co-sponsored by SAGE Publishing, focused on international economic and policy approaches to environmental regulation. “A Turning Point for International Climate Policy? New Approaches to Environmental and Economic Cooperation” features this year’s recipient of the AAPSS Daniel Patrick Moynihan Prize, Nobel-winning economist William Nordhaus.

Nordhaus, Sterling Professor of Economics and Professor of Forestry and Environmental Studies at Yale University, became committed to the study of climate and to developing macroeconomic approaches that dealt with environmental change in the 1970s. He invented economic models that determine efficient paths for coping with a warming planet, and his scientific contributions culminated in a Nobel Prize in Economics in 2018. He has long emphasized the importance of cooperative international approaches to the control of carbon emissions, and recently advocated for “climate clubs” as a policy approach that can change international incentives in environmental policy.

The AAPSS seminar comes as international approaches to lowering emissions have not worked, and more than two decades after the Kyoto Protocol, the world still does not have a binding international agreement on climate change. The Biden Administration has put climate change at the center of its priorities, and public support from Americans for action has never been higher. What are the options? What might actually work?

A panel of experts, moderated by Princeton’s Robert Keohane, an AAPSS fellow, will join Nordhaus to discuss carbon pricing approaches, climate clubs, and contemporary international climate policy.

The panel includes:

David Victor

• David Victor is a professor of innovation and public policy at the School of Global Policy and Strategy at University of California, San Diego.  He is the Center for Global Transformation Endowed Chair in Innovation and Public Policy. Victor is also the co-director of the campus-wide Deep Decarbonization Initiative, which focuses on real world strategies for bringing the world to nearly zero emissions of warming gases.  His research focuses on regulated industries and how regulation affects the operation of major energy markets. Much of his research is at the intersection of climate change science and policy. His book Global Warming Gridlock  explains why the world hasn’t made much diplomatic progress on the problem of climate change while also exploring new strategies that would be more effective.

Kathryn Harrison

• Kathryn Harrison is a professor of political science at the University of British Columbia. She studies environmental, climate, and energy policy, federalism, and comparative public policy and is the author of Passing the Buck: Federalism and Canadian Environmental Policy and co-author of Risk, Science, and Politics. In addition, she has edited or co-edited several volumes, including Racing to the Bottom? Provincial Interdependence in the Canadian Federation, and Global Commons, Domestic Decisions: The Comparative Politics of Climate Change.

Rachel Kyte

• Rachel Kyte is the dean of The Fletcher School at Tufts University, and is the first woman to lead the nation’s oldest graduate-only school of international affairs. Prior to joining Fletcher, Kyte served as special representative of the U.N. secretary-general and chief executive officer of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL). She previously was the World Bank Group vice president and special envoy for climate change, leading in the run-up to the Paris Agreement. She was also vice president at the International Finance Corporation responsible for environmental, social, and corporate governance risk and business advisory services.

Robert Keohane

Moderator Robert Keohane is a professor of international affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. Keohane was president of the International Studies Association from 1988-1989 and president of the American Political Science Association from 1999-2000. He stood as the Chair of the Department of Government at Harvard University from 1988-1992, and has, throughout his career, served in various capacities at international organizations.

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American Academy of Political and Social Science

The American Academy of Political and Social Science, one of the nation’s oldest learned societies, is dedicated to the use of social science to address important social problems. For over a century, our flagship journal, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, has brought together public officials and scholars from across the disciplines to tackle issues ranging from racial inequality and intractable poverty to the threat of nuclear terrorism. Today, through conferences and symposia, podcast interviews with leading social scientists, and the annual induction of Academy Fellows and presentation of the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Prize, the Academy is dedicated to bridging the gap between academic research and the formation of public policy.

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