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"Putting the Party Back In: Explaining EU Member State Compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, 1998-2003"

Jensen, Christian B. and Spoon, Jae-Jae. (2007) "Putting the Party Back In: Explaining EU Member State Compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, 1998-2003". In: UNSPECIFIED, Montreal, Canada. (Unpublished)

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    Why do some countries comply with their treaty obligations, even when those obligations impose a heavy political burden? Past analyses have shown domestic politics plays an important role. Downs et al (1996) and Von Stein (2005) argue that countries most readily enter into treaties when they would comply with the obligations anyway. Furthermore, Pahre and Papayanou (1997) and Dai (2005, 2006) posit that demands by domestic constituents for particular types of policies lead governments to first ratify and then comply with international agreements. While pointing to domestic politics as an important source of signatory states’ compliance with international agreements, this line of research treats much of domestic politics as a black box. Building on their work and research from the comparative politics literature, we unpack critical aspects of that black box by examining the ideological preferences and institutional position of political parties. Using the European Union’s Kyoto Protocol Burden Sharing Agreement as a natural laboratory, we show the importance of parties’ preferences and their position in government. First, we find that governments that are ideologically divided with regard to the environment make slower progress towards full compliance. Second, we find that governments that are more pro-environment make better progress towards compliance. Finally, we find that green party representation in government predicts progress towards compliance while public opinion and green party representation on the parliament floor do not.

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    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > europeanisation/europeanization & European identity
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > political affairs > political parties
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > environmental policy (including international arena)
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Conference: European Union Studies Association (EUSA) > Biennial Conference > 2007 (10th), May 17-19, 2007
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 06 May 2008
    Page Range: p. 33
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:50

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