International Politics of Climate Change

General remarks and organisation – Lectures

Summary

Climate change has now grown from a scientific concern to one of the most pressing issues of our time. This course aims to look at the topic from a political viewpoint, and analyze the different mechanisms of cooperation in the fight against climate change. The first part provides an appraisal of climate change as a political issue: it examines how environmental issues, and climate change in particular, became a topic on the international agenda. The second part examines the relationship that exists between science and politics: how does science shape climate policy and negotiations? A specific attention will be devoted to the recent climate controversies and the communication of climate change. The third part addresses the intertwining relationship that exists between international relations and climate change: how does diplomacy influence climate talks, and how does global warming impact upon the relations between states? Finally, a fourth part deals with some pressing geopolitical issues associated with climate change: population displacements and migration, security concerns and climate justice.

In a nutshell, the course provides an introduction of the politics of climate change, and tries to decipher the political mechanisms involved in the fight against global warming. It should be of interest for all students interested in international relations and environmental policies, and environmental diplomacy in particular. No prerequisite nor prior knowledge of the topic is needed.

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