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Public Preferences for Environmental Policy Responsibility


  • David Konisky


Analyzing survey data from the 2007 Cooperative Congressional Election Study, this article examines citizens' preferences for assigning policy responsibility for environmental problems to different levels of government. I find that the public generally prefers the federal government to take the lead in addressing most issues, particularly those that relate to pollution and those that have a national or global scale. The public, however, prefers to give more responsibility to state and local governments to handle local-level issues. These results suggest a desire among many in the public to match governmental policy assignment with the geographic scale of the problem. The best predictor of individual's choice of government level is political orientation, and to a lesser extent one's general confidence in each level of government. Copyright 2011, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • David Konisky, 2011. "Public Preferences for Environmental Policy Responsibility," Publius: The Journal of Federalism, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(1), pages 76-100, Winter.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:publus:v:41:y:2011:i:1:p:76-100

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    Cited by:

    1. Christopher Jeffords, 2014. "Preference-directed regulation when ethical environmental policy choices are formed with limited information," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 46(2), pages 573-606, March.
    2. Naveed Paydara, Olga Schenk, Ashley Bowers, Sanya Carley, John Rupp and John D. Graham, 2016. "The Effect of Community Reinvestment Funds on Local Acceptance of Unconventional Gas Development," Economics of Energy & Environmental Policy, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1).

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