Policy linkages and international cooperation on climate change: who cares about the economic burden of the environment- INTCOP21
INTCOP21 is a Marie Curie Intra European Fellowship which aims at shedding light on some relevant aspects of the relationship between the world trade liberalization, i.e. the increasing economic inter-connections between countries, and the international provision of global public goods such as climate stability.
The project INTCOP21 was financed by the European Commission, within the Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowship scheme of the FP7 People Programme. Dr. Melanie Heugues, from France, was the Marie Curie Fellow. She developed the project under the supervision of Dr. Valentina Bosetti.
INTCOP21 is a Marie Curie Intra European Fellowship which aimeds at shedding light on some relevant aspects of the relationship between the world trade liberalization, i.e. the increasing economic inter-connections between countries, and the international provision of global public goods such as climate stability.
The idea was to contrast with the existing literature on international cooperation that mostly assumes that countries’ environmental policies are substitutable or even independent. Instead, the approach proposed aimed at considering in deep the fundamentals of strategic interactions between countries. The alternative assumption is that unilateral emission reductions by a set of countries can create self-interested emission reductions in other countries.
The project primary objective was to study the impacts of some of the major insights used in international trade theory on countries’ incentives to participate in an international environmental agreement, on the environmental impact of such cooperation and on the conditions of emergence of a leading group in lowering emissions. This point was achieved using non-cooperative game theory (to model strategic interactions), coalition formation theory (to model incentives to take part in an agreement) and international trade theory (to model policy linkages between open trading nations).
Beyond the theoretical outcome, the enclosed objective of the research was to confront the results of the theory with experimental data. Through the design of a matching process in which one country’s contribution depends on other countries´ abatement efforts, the question arises whether such a mechanism could reduce free-rider behavior and induce a more efficient negotiation outcome.
Finally this research was essential to tackle the provision of global public goods which is one of the new challenges of the twenty-first century. Recognizing the existence of such goods and securing their provision at an international level are central for promoting the well-being of humanity.