Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Climate Solutions Lab

Making Climate Policy Work

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

12:00pm – 1:00pm

Watch on Watson's YouTube channel

The Climate Solutions Lab and the Institute at Brown for the Environment and Society welcome authors Danny Cullenward and David Victor for a discussion of their new book, Making Climate Policy Work. Moderated by Jeff Colgan, Director of the Climate Solutions Lab, and Richard Holbrooke Associate Professor of Political Science and International and Public Affairs. With Amanda Lynch, Sloan Lindemann and George Lindemann, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Environment and Society, Professor of Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences, as discussant.

For decades, the world’s governments have struggled to move from talk to action on climate. Many now hope that growing public concern will lead to greater policy ambition, but the most widely promoted strategy to address the climate crisis – the use of market-based programs – hasn’t been working and isn’t ready to scale.

Danny Cullenward and David Victor show how the politics of creating and maintaining market-based policies render them ineffective nearly everywhere they have been applied. Reforms can help around the margins, but markets’ problems are structural and won’t disappear with increasing demand for climate solutions. Facing that reality requires relying more heavily on smart regulation and industrial policy – government-led strategies – to catalyze the transformation that markets promise, but rarely deliver.