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The Self-Selection of Democracies into Treaty Design: Insights from International Environmental Agreements

Bohmelt, T and Butkute, E (2018) 'The Self-Selection of Democracies into Treaty Design: Insights from International Environmental Agreements.' International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, 18 (3). pp. 351-367. ISSN 1567-9764

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Generally, democratic regime type is positively associated with participating in international environmental agreements. In this context, this study focuses on the legal nature of an agreement, which is linked to audience costs primarily at the domestic level that occur in case of non-compliance and are felt especially by democracies. Eventually, more legalized (\hard-law") treaties make compliance potentially more challenging and democratic leaders may anticipate the corresponding audience costs, which decreases the likelihood that democracies select themselves into such treaties. The empirical implication of our theory follows that environmental agreements with a larger share of democratic members are less likely to be characterized by hard law. This claim is tested using quantitative data on global environmental treaties. The results strongly support our argument, shed new light on the relationship between participation in international agreements and the form of government, and also have implications for the \words-deeds" debate in international environmental policy-making.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Democracy; Design; International Environmental Agreements; Legalization; Quantitative Methods; Treaties
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Government, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 22 Jan 2018 13:01
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 13:47

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