Environmental Governance in Asia series
1 Preceding chapters have discussed the institutional framework and operation of biodiversity conservation in China and Taiwan. In this chapter we shift our focus to the bottom-up dynamics of environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs). They are major agencies of change, as they alert institutions to the existence of problems in species and ecosystem preservation, monitor the performance of institutions, and even play roles in the administration of government programs. ROLE OF NGOS IN ENVIRONMENTAL GOVERNANCE AND CIVIL SOCIETY The increasing importance of environmental non-governmental organizations in environmental governance has attracted attention from scholars as well as policy makers. As William Clark argues, in the scheme of ‘global governance’, the third sector composed of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) has undergone the greatest change vis-à-vis the environment. Such organizations have existed for a century or more, but it is only in recent decades, and particularly since the success of NGOs in shaping the Rio Conference on Environment and Development in 1992, that their numbers have multiplied. The NGO community has shown a remarkable ability to utilize emerging information and technologies and to aggressively construct ad hoc coalitions to address issues.2 Table 7.1 summarizes the trajectory of NGOs by showing the three stages of environmental movements and environmental reforms. As noted in Table 7.1, ecological modernization in the third stage of environmental reform is a process of environmental restructuring. Ecological modernization is expressed in various transformations regarding the traditional central role of the nation-state in environmental reform. First, there is a trend toward more...
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