Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Climate Solutions Lab

Global Environmental Politics

University of London

Political Science

Fall 2020

Prof. Liam Beiser-McGrath

Undergraduate seminar

This course examines both the domestic and international politics of the environment. The first part of the course consists of defining the environmental problems faced globally, highlighting similarities and differences to other issues. This part also identifies the key actors, interests, and institutions that are necessary to understand the politics of climate change. The second part of the course focuses on three varieties of theories of environmental politics: collective action problems, distributional politics, and ideational conflict. The third part then examines a variety of topics in environmental politics, building upon the analytical approaches outlined in the first two parts of the course. The chosen topics allow for both understanding how politics shapes environmental outcomes, for example through international agreements, as well as how climate change and the environment affects political outcomes, for example by fostering political conflict.