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Endogenous Minimum Participation in International Environmental Treaties

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  • Carraro, Carlo
  • Marchiori, Carmen
  • Oreffice, Sonia

Abstract

Many international treaties come into force only after a minimum number of countries have signed and ratified the treaty. Why do countries agree to introduce a minimum participation constraint among the rules characterizing an international treaty? This question is particularly relevant in the case of environmental treaties dealing with global commons, where free-riding incentives are strong. Is a minimum participation rule a way to offset these free-riding incentives? Why do countries that know they have an incentive to free-ride accept to ‘tie their hands’ through the introduction of a minimum participation constraint? This Paper addresses the above questions by analysing a three-stage non-cooperative coalition formation game. In the first stage, countries set the minimum coalition size that is necessary for the treaty to come into force. In the second stage, countries decide whether to sign the treaty. In the third stage, the equilibrium values of the decision variables are set. At the equilibrium, both the minimum participation constraint and the number of signatories - the coalition size - are determined. This Paper shows that a non-trivial partial coalition, sustained by a binding minimum participation constraint, forms at the equilibrium. This Paper thus explains why in international negotiations all countries often agree on a minimum participation rule even when some of them do not intend to sign the treaty. The Paper also analyses the optimal size of the minimum participation constraint.

Suggested Citation

  • Carraro, Carlo & Marchiori, Carmen & Oreffice, Sonia, 2004. "Endogenous Minimum Participation in International Environmental Treaties," CEPR Discussion Papers 4281, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4281
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Effrosyni Diamantoudi & Eftichios S. Sartzetakis, 2006. "Stable International Environmental Agreements: An Analytical Approach," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 8(2), pages 247-263, May.
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    5. Carraro, Carlo & Siniscalco, Domenico, 1993. "Strategies for the international protection of the environment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 309-328, October.
    6. Eyckmans, Johan & Tulkens, Henry, 2003. "Simulating coalitionally stable burden sharing agreements for the climate change problem," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 299-327, October.
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    9. Barrett, Scott, 1994. "Self-Enforcing International Environmental Agreements," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 46(0), pages 878-894, Supplemen.
    10. Ray, Debraj & Vohra, Rajiv, 1999. "A Theory of Endogenous Coalition Structures," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 286-336, January.
    11. Carlo Carraro (ed.), 2003. "The Endogenous Formation of Economic Coalitions," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 2999, April.
    12. Santiago J. Rubio & Alistair Ulph, 2006. "Self-enforcing international environmental agreements revisited," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 233-263, April.
    13. Carraro, Carlo & Siniscalco, Domenico, 1992. "The international dimension of environmental policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(2-3), pages 379-387, April.
    14. Yi, Sang-Seung, 1997. "Stable Coalition Structures with Externalities," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 201-237, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Carlo Carraro & Carmen Marchiori, 2003. "Stable coalitions," Chapters,in: The Endogenous Formation of Economic Coalitions, chapter 5 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Valentina Bosetti & Carlo Carraro & Alessandra Sgobbi & Massimo Tavoni, 2008. "Modelling Economic Impacts of Alternative International Climate Policy Architectures. A Quantitative and Comparative Assessment of Architectures for Agreement," Working Papers 2008.85, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    3. David M. McEvoy & John K. Stranlund, 2006. "Enforcing ‘Self-Enforcing’ International Environmental Agreements," Working Papers 2006-6, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Resource Economics.
    4. Gerber, Anke & Neitzel, Jakob & Wichardt, Philipp C., 2013. "Minimum participation rules for the provision of public goods," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 209-222.
    5. Bard Harstad, 2006. "Flexible Integration," Discussion Papers 1428, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    6. Kohnz, Simone, 2006. "Ratification quotas in international agreements," Discussion Papers in Economics 900, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
    7. Leo Wangler & Juan-Carlos Altamirano-Cabrera & Hans-Peter Weikard, 2013. "The political economy of international environmental agreements: a survey," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 387-403, September.
    8. Olivier Bos & Béatrice Roussillon & Paul Schweinzer, 2016. "Agreeing on Efficient Emissions Reduction," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 118(4), pages 785-815, October.
    9. David M. McEvoy & Todd L. Cherry & John K. Stranlund, 2011. "The Endogenous Formation of Coalitions to Provide Public Goods: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Working Papers 2011-2, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Resource Economics.
    10. Michael Finus, 2004. "Modesty Pays: Sometimes!," Working Papers 2004.68, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    11. Fabio Sferra & Massimo Tavoni, 2013. "Endogenous Participation in a Partial Climate Agreement with Open Entry: A Numerical Assessment," Working Papers 2013.60, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    12. Michèle Breton & Lucia Sbragia & Georges Zaccour, 2010. "A Dynamic Model for International Environmental Agreements," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 45(1), pages 25-48, January.
    13. Beard, Rodney & Mallawaarachchi, Thilak, 2011. "Are international environmental agreements stable ex-post?," MPRA Paper 34303, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Michael Hoel & Aart Zeeuw, 2010. "Can a Focus on Breakthrough Technologies Improve the Performance of International Environmental Agreements?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 47(3), pages 395-406, November.
    15. Michael Finus & Bianca Rundshagen, 2009. "Membership rules and stability of coalition structures in positive externality games," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 32(3), pages 389-406, March.
    16. Johan Eyckmans & Michael Finus, 2003. "Coalition Formation in a Global Warming Game: How the Design of Protocols Affects the Success of Environmental Treaty-Making," Energy, Transport and Environment Working Papers Series ete0317, KU Leuven, Department of Economics - Research Group Energy, Transport and Environment.
    17. Pierre Courtois & Guillaume Haeringer, 2012. "Environmental cooperation: ratifying second-best agreements," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 151(3), pages 565-584, June.
    18. Michael Finus & Bianca Rundshagen, 2003. "How the Rules of Coalition Formation Affect Stability of International Environmental Agreements," Working Papers 2003.62, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    19. Dritan Osmani & Richard Tol, 2010. "The Case of two Self-Enforcing International Agreements for Environmental Protection with Asymmetric Countries," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 36(2), pages 93-119, August.
    20. David McEvoy, 2013. "Enforcing compliance with international environmental agreements using a deposit-refund system," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 481-496, November.
    21. David McEvoy & John Stranlund, 2009. "Self-enforcing International Environmental Agreements with Costly Monitoring for Compliance," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 42(4), pages 491-508, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    agreements; climate; incentives; negotiation; policy;

    JEL classification:

    • H00 - Public Economics - - General - - - General
    • H40 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - General
    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General

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