Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Climate Solutions Lab

Comparative and International Environmental Politics

University of California Santa Barbara

Political Science

Fall 2019

Prof. Matto Mildenberger


In this seminar, we will explore the global and comparative political economy of the environment. We will review an established literature on the environment in IR, and an emerging literature on the environment in comparative politics. Throughout, the seminar will emphasize critical re ection on the methods used by political science to study the environment. We will contrast existing theoretical approaches to the study of the environment with traditional IR and CP perspectives. Topics will include: public goods theory, collective action theory, international environmental negotiations, environmental scarcity and con ict, the role of international and domestic institutions in environmental policymaking, environmental interest groups, environmental policymaking in non-democracies, and comparative environmental behavior. Special attention will be paid to the political economy of climate change. Students who are not specializing in environmental politics will still nd the seminar an opportunity for focused study of the interplay between domestic and international politics in a single issue domain.

As a graduate seminar, this course will also focus on research design, critically examining the standards of inference that have been used in environmental politics research. In both class discussion and written assignment, students will be expected to think critically about the ways in which environmental politics scholarship contributes to and engages core disciplinary debates.