Negotiating to Avoid 'Gradual' Versus 'Dangerous' Climate Change: An Experimental Test of Two Prisoners' Dilemmas

30 Pages Posted: 5 Feb 2014

See all articles by Scott Barrett

Scott Barrett

Columbia University - School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA)

Astrid Dannenberg

Göteborg University

Date Written: January 30, 2014

Abstract

According to the Framework Convention on Climate Change, global collective action is needed to stabilize "greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous [our emphasis] anthropogenic interference with the climate system." The Framework Convention thus implies that, on the far side of some critical concentration level, climate change will be "dangerous," while on the near side of the threshold, climate change will be "safe" (though perhaps still undesirable). Rather than be linear and smooth, the Framework Convention warns that climate change may be "abrupt and catastrophic."

Keywords: climate change, prisoners’ dilemma, catastrophe, negotiations, cooperation, uncertainty, experimental economics

JEL Classification: C720, F510, H410, H870, Q540

Suggested Citation

Barrett, Scott and Dannenberg, Astrid, Negotiating to Avoid 'Gradual' Versus 'Dangerous' Climate Change: An Experimental Test of Two Prisoners' Dilemmas (January 30, 2014). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 4573. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2390561

Scott Barrett (Contact Author)

Columbia University - School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA) ( email )

420 West 118th Street
New York, NY 10027
United States

Astrid Dannenberg

Göteborg University ( email )

Viktoriagatan 30
Göteborg, 405 30
Sweden

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