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Beyond the “Keystone” CoPs: The Ecology of Institutional Governance in Conservation Treaty Regimes

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image of International Community Law Review

Abstract The effectiveness of conservation treaty regimes plainly depends heavily on the extent to which they are informed by developing scientific understanding of the principles which govern the operation of biological systems and natural processes generally. As a result, the “ecosystem approach” has become a crucial element in the substantive conservation policies which underpin such regimes. There is an emerging view, however, that the principles which determine the essential robustness, stability and productivity of biological systems may actually be applicable to complex systems of any kind, including those of an institutional character. Accordingly, it may be instructive to have regard to such principles when devising the institutional arrangements which indisputably represent another crucial element of regime effectiveness. This article explores the relevance of such matters in relation to the structures, attributes and commitments with which such arrangements will need to be invested if their respective regimes are to flourish.

Affiliations: 1: University of Nottingham Treaty Centre Nottingham UK


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