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The Respectable Politics of Climate Change: The Epistemic Communities and NGOs

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Climate change is unusual compared with most environmental issues in the extent to which it has become accepted among orthodox policy institutions and public-and private-sector organizations. The authors explore the conditions that have led to the establishment of an epistemic community that brings together a broad array of actors, including the various NGOs, and the operational dimensions that define the participation of NGOs within the community. An epistemic community does not imply conformity of opinion or approach but allows for differentiation in terms of how its members construct the problem, and their objectives, core beliefs and favoured responses to climate change. Three broad styles of engagement through which NGOs contribute to this debate are identified: developing creative policy solutions, knowledge construction, and lobbying or campaigning. It should be noted that the authors refer primarily to development or environmental NGOs (ENGOs), though they do discuss business NGOs at a few points.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Manchester School of Management, University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology and Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, UK, 2: Manchester School of Management, UMIST. Research Programme Manager of the Tyndall Centre for Climate, Uk

Publication date: April 1, 2001

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