Handbook of Global Environmental Politics, Second Edition
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Handbook of Global Environmental Politics, Second Edition

Edited by Peter Dauvergne

The second edition of this Handbook contains more than 30 new and original articles as well as six essential updates by leading scholars of global environmental politics. This landmark book maps the latest theoretical and empirical research in this energetic and growing field. Captured here are the pioneering and lively debates over concerns for the health of the planet and how they might best be addressed.
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Chapter 22: Nonstate Actors in Global Environmental Governance

Matthias Finger and David Svarin


Matthias Finger and David Svarin This chapter is about the emergence of nonstate actors in global environmental politics, a process which already has and increasingly will lead to new forms of global environmental governance (GEG). There are basically two types of nonstate actors, namely business actors or rather transnational corporations (TNCs), which emerge in parallel to the globalizing economy, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), which emerge as a reaction to this globalizing economy and especially its negative environmental consequences. More precisely, we shall outline how these nonstate actors have emerged, what these actors concretely do, and what the new distribution of roles among governments, TNCs, and NGOs ideally should be. In conclusion, we shall argue that the emergence of such GEG involving all three types of actors is not only inevitable but also desirable. Globalization of World Politics: The Emergence of Nonstate Actors The notion of governance has gained importance in international relations, particularly in connection with the issue of globalization and the changing world order. Following the end of the Cold War, a debate emerged as to whether there was a decline of the nation state and whether the form of power shifted from government to governance.1 The phenomenon of globalization, both economic and political, further fueled this evolution. This general evolution can be put under the broad concept of governance. Rosenau defines governance as “a system of rule that is as dependent on intersubjective meanings as on formally sanctioned constitutions and charters.”2 In this sense, governance implies a...

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