Democracy and Climate Change Policies: Is History Important?

Ecological Economics, 95, 2013, pp. 11-19

33 Pages Posted: 30 Jan 2013 Last revised: 4 Dec 2013

Per G. Fredriksson

University of Louisville - College of Business - Department of Economics

Eric Neumayer

London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

Date Written: April 16, 2013

Abstract

This paper argues that it is countries’ historical experience with democracy, the democratic capital stock, rather than current levels of democracy that determines current climate change policies. Empirical evidence using data starting as far back as year 1800 for 87 countries, which together are responsible for 93.7 per cent of global carbon emissions, suggests that the democratic capital stock has an important and robust effect on climate change policies. A history of executive constraints is particularly important. The current level of democracy does not play a role once democratic capital has been accounted for.

Keywords: Democracy, Democratic Capital, Political Economy, International Public Goods: Climate Change, Environmental Policy, Executive Constraints

JEL Classification: H23, H87, Q54, Q58

Suggested Citation

Fredriksson, Per G. and Neumayer, Eric, Democracy and Climate Change Policies: Is History Important? (April 16, 2013). Ecological Economics, 95, 2013, pp. 11-19. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2203726 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2203726

Per G. Fredriksson

University of Louisville - College of Business - Department of Economics ( email )

Louisville, KY 40292
United States

Eric Neumayer (Contact Author)

London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) ( email )

Houghton Street
WC2A 2AE London
United Kingdom
+44 207 955 7598 (Phone)
+44 207 955 7412 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://personal.lse.ac.uk/neumayer

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