A Polycentric Approach for Coping with Climate Change

This paper proposes an alternative approach to addressing the complex problems of climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions. The author, who won the 2009 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, argues that single policies adopted only at a global scale are unlikely to generate sufficient trust among citizens and firms so that collective action can take place in a comprehensive and transparent manner that will effectively reduce global warming. Furthermore, simply recommending a single governmental unit to solve global collective action problems is inherently weak because of freerider problems.

Elinor Ostrom
Published in: World Bank
2009 Research Working Paper 5095