Advertisement

Bridging the Gap Between the Local and the Global Scale? Taming the Wicked Problem of Climate Change Through Trans-Local Governance

  • Jörg KemmerzellEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Comparative Territorial Politics book series (COMPTPOL)

Abstract

Cities and urban regions are not only the main originators of global climate change but particularly “incubators” of developments towards low-carbon-transitions. Notably in Europe, local climate policies are increasingly embedded in a dense structure of vertical and horizontal multilevel governance arrangements. Scholarship on cities and climate change ascribes two essential functions to multilevel activities: first, to bridge the trans-boundary and multi-scalar nature of climate change action; and secondly, to facilitate learning from best practice. However, local actors have the difficult task to explain publicly why a particular contribution of a city is necessary in order to tackle the wicked problem of global climate change. Kemmerzell argues that cities are particularly affected by the consequences of wickedness. Therefore, local actors need to embed climate policies within broader strategic settings. Based on research on the German cities Frankfurt, Munich, and Stuttgart, the chapter identifies and applies four mechanisms which trace the impact of trans-local action on local climate policy.

Keywords

Climate change Mechanisms Multilevel governance Trans-local action Urban politics Wicked problems 

Notes

Acknowledgements

I am greatly indebted to my longstanding friends and colleagues Bettina Petersohn and Jared Sonnicksen for useful comments and suggestions on the first draft of this chapter.

References

  1. Barber, B. (2013). If Mayors Ruled the World: Dysfunctional Nations, Rising Cities. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Beach, D., & Pedersen, R. B. (2013). Process-Tracing Methods: Foundations and Guidelines. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bendlin, L. (2016). Cities’ Views and Ownership of the Covenant of Mayors. In J. Kemmerzell, M. Knodt, & A. Tews (Eds.), Städte und Energiepolitik im europäischen Mehrebenensystem. Zwischen Energiesicherheit, Nachhaltigkeit und Wettbewerb (pp. 103–124). Baden-Baden: Nomos.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Benz, A. (2012). Yardstick Competition and Policy Learning in Multilevel Systems. Regional and Federal Studies, 22(3), 251–267.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Benz, A., Kemmerzell, J., Knodt, M., & Tews, A. (2015). The Trans-Local Dimension of Local Climate Policy: Sustaining and Transforming Local Knowledge Orders Through Trans-Local Action. Urban Research & Practice, 8(3), 319–335.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Betsill, M., & Bulkeley, H. (2006). Cities and the Multilevel Governance of Global Climate Change. Global Governance, 12(2), 141–159.Google Scholar
  7. Bulkeley, H. (2006). Urban Sustainability: Learning from Best Practice? Environment and Planning A, 38(6), 1029–1044.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bulkeley, H., & Betsill, M. (2013). Revisiting the Urban Politics of Climate Change. Environmental Politics, 22(1), 136–154.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Busch, H. (2015). Linked for Action? An Analysis of Transnational Municipal Climate Networks in Germany. International Journal of Urban Sustainable Development, 7(2), 213–231.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Busch, H., Bendlin, L., & Fenton, P. (2018). Shaping Local Response—The Influence of Transnational Municipal Climate Networks on Urban Climate Governance. Urban Climate, 24, 221–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Dolowitz, D., & Marsh, D. (2000). Learning from Abroad: The Role of Policy Transfer in Contemporary Policy-Making. Governance, 13(1), 5–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Dyson, K. (2005). Binding Hands as a Strategy for Economic Reform: Government by Commission. German Politics, 14(2), 224–247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Elster, J. (2000). Ulysses Unbound: Studies in Rationality, Precommitment, and Constraints. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  14. Falleti, T. G., & Lynch, J. F. (2009). Context and Causal Mechanisms in Political Analysis. Comparative Political Studies, 42(9), 1143–1166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Frankfurt. (2007). Klimaschutz in Frankfurt am Main. Bericht 1990–2007. Edited by the Department of Environment and Health and the Department of Urban Planning. Frankfurt.Google Scholar
  16. Frankfurt. (2013). Ein kommunaler Klimaschutzbericht für Frankfurt. Presentation to the Council Meeting B 274/2013. Frankfurt.Google Scholar
  17. Gerring, J. (2010). Causal Mechanisms: Yes, but…. Comparative Political Studies, 43(11), 1499–1526.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hayek, F. A. (1969). Der Wettbewerb als Entdeckungsverfahren. In F. A. Hayek (Ed.), Freiburger Studien (pp. 249–265). Tübingen: Mohr-Siebeck.Google Scholar
  19. Heinelt, H., & Lamping, W. (2015). The Development of Local Knowledge Orders: A Conceptual Framework to Explain Differences in Climate Policy at the Local Level. Urban Research & Practice, 8(3), 283–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Heyvaert, V. (2013). What’s in a Name? The Covenant of Mayors as Transnational Environmental Regulation. Review of European, Comparative & International Environmental Law, 22(1), 78–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Hughes, S., Chu, E., & Mason, S. (2018). Introduction. In S. Hughes, E. Chu, & S. Mason (Eds.), Climate Change in Cities: Innovations in Multi-level Governance (pp. 1–15). Cham: Springer.Google Scholar
  22. Kemmerzell, J. (2016). Überlokales Handeln in der lokalen Klimapolitik. Eine Brücke zwischen globalem Anspruch und lokaler Implementation. In M. Barbehön & S. Münch (Eds.), Variationen des Städtischen, Variationen lokaler Politik (pp. 245–271). Wiesbaden: Springer VS.Google Scholar
  23. Kemmerzell, J. (2018). Innovations in European Climate Governance and Their Impact on Local Climate Policy: An Analysis of German Major Cities. In S. Hughes, E. Chu, & S. Mason (Eds.), Climate Change in Cities: Innovations in Multi-level Governance (pp. 39–57). Cham: Springer.Google Scholar
  24. Kern, K. (2014). Climate Governance in the European Union Multilevel System: The Role of Cities. In I. Weibust & J. Meadowcroft (Eds.), Multilevel Environmental Governance: Managing Water and Climate Change in Europe and North America (pp. 111–130). Cheltenham and Northampton: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
  25. Kern, K., & Bulkeley, H. (2009). Cities, Europeanization and Multi-level Governance: Governing Climate Change Through Transnational Municipal Networks. Journal of Common Market Studies, 47(2), 309–332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Levin, K., Cashore, B., Bernstein, S., & Auld, G. (2012). Overcoming the Tragedy of Super Wicked Problems: Constraining Our Future Selves to Ameliorate Global Climate Change. Policy Sciences, 45(2), 123–152.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Munich. (2012). Integriertes Handlungsprogramm Klimaschutz in München (IHKM). Klimaschutzprogramm 2013. Decision of the Municipal Council 08-14 / V 10670. Munich.Google Scholar
  28. OECD. (2010). Cities and Climate Change. Paris: OECD.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ostrom, E. (2010). Polycentric Systems for Coping with Collective Action and Global Environmental Change. Global Environmental Change, 20(4), 550–557.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Reuter, U. (2013). Stadt und Klimawandel. Das Beispiel Stuttgart. Planerin, 5, 29–31.Google Scholar
  31. Rittel, H. W. J., & Webber, M. (1973). Dilemmas in a General Theory of Planning. Policy Sciences, 4(2), 155–169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Schreurs, M. A. (2008). From the Bottom Up: Local and Subnational Climate Change Politics. The Journal of Environment & Development, 17(4), 343–355.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Slocum, R. (2004). Polar Bears and Energy-Efficient Lightbulbs: Strategies to Bring Climate Change Home. Environment and Planning D, 22(3), 413–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Steffen, W. (2011). A Truly Complex and Diabolic Policy Problem. In J. Dryzek, et al. (Eds.), Oxford Handbook of Climate Change and Society (pp. 20–37). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  35. Stuttgart. (2007). Fortschreibung des Klimaschutzkonzeptes (KLIKS) – Maßnahmenkatalog, GRDrs 723/ 2007. Stuttgart.Google Scholar
  36. Stuttgart. (2009). Konvent der BürgermeisterInnen, GRDrs 663/ 2008. Stuttgart.Google Scholar
  37. Tiebout, C. (1956). A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures. The Journal of Political Economy, 64(5), 416–424.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Verweij, M. (2011). Clumsy Solutions for a Wicked World: How to Improve Global Governance. Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Google Scholar
  39. Waldner, D. (2010). What Are Mechanisms and What Are They Good for? Qualitative & Multi-Method Research, 8(2), 30–34.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Technische Universität DarmstadtDarmstadtGermany

Personalised recommendations