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Addressing climate change democratically. Multi-level governance, transnational networks and governmental structures


  • Rolf Lidskog

    (Centre for Urban and Regional Studies, Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden)

  • Ingemar Elander

    (Centre for Urban and Regional Studies, Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden)


The purpose of the article is to discuss the democratic implications of climate change and whether or not it is possible to harmonize basic democratic values with the challenges raised by global warming. Highlighting three central democratic mechanisms it is argued that even if participation and deliberation are crucial for addressing the challenge of climate change this must be done within a system of democratic representation. To become both efficient and democratic, climate governance has to include different spheres and levels of authority. As there is no blueprint for a new institutional order of this kind we have to build upon and better utilize the patchwork of multi-level governance at hand. The growing number of trans-national networks, including a great variety of coalitions between actors from formal as well as informal institutions, has a great potential as an arena for deliberation of the challenge of climate change. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.

Suggested Citation

  • Rolf Lidskog & Ingemar Elander, 2010. "Addressing climate change democratically. Multi-level governance, transnational networks and governmental structures," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(1), pages 32-41.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:sustdv:v:18:y:2010:i:1:p:32-41
    DOI: 10.1002/sd.395

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Rolf Lidskog, 2005. "Siting conflicts -- democratic perspectives and political implications," Journal of Risk Research, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(3), pages 187-206, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Allen, Patricia & Chatterton, Tim, 2013. "Carbon reduction scenarios for 2050: An explorative analysis of public preferences," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 796-808.
    2. Anderson, Brilé & Bernauer, Thomas & Kachi, Aya, 2017. "Towards a More Nuanced Understanding of How International Pooling of Authority May Affect the Perceived Legitimacy of Global Governance," Working papers 2017/16, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
    3. repec:kap:jbuset:v:143:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10551-015-2769-z is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Riikka Sievänen & John Sumelius & K. Islam & Mila Sell, 2013. "From struggle in responsible investment to potential to improve global environmental governance through UN PRI," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 197-217, May.
    5. Castán Broto, Vanesa, 2017. "Urban Governance and the Politics of Climate change," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 1-15.

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