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Rethinking Justice in International Environmental Negotiations: Toward a More Comprehensive Framework

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image of International Negotiation

Justice is of central importance in international environmental negotiations. Key characteristics of this type of negotiation augment the complexities of justice issues and warrant a customized approach. Based on a discussion of these characteristics, the article derives four components that are central to a more comprehensive theoretical framework for analyzing justice in environmental negotiations: 1) going beyond narrow self-interest, 2) extending the notion of reciprocity, 3) linking backward- and forward-orientation, and 4) connecting process and outcome. The usefulness of the framework is illustrated by applying it to two important Conferences of the Parties (COP) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change – COP15 in Copenhagen and COP21 in Paris – which are compared. The framework is suited for a systematic analysis of the complex role played by justice issues in international environmental negotiation, as a key avenue for addressing global threats emerging from anthropogenic environmental change.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University Box 514, Gamla Torget 3, S-751 20 UppsalaSweden


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