Accountability and legitimacy in earth system governance: A research framework

F. Biermann, A. Gupta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

136 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Along with concerns over the effectiveness of earth system governance, ways of enhancing its accountability and legitimacy are increasingly coming to the fore in both scholarly debate and political practice. Concerns over accountability and legitimacy pertain to all levels of governance, from the local to the global, and cover the spectrum of public and private governance arrangements. This conceptual article elaborates on the sources, mechanisms and reform options relating to more accountable, legitimate and democratic earth system governance. We proceed in four steps. First, we conceptualize accountability and legitimacy in earth system governance. Second, we place questions of accountability and legitimacy within the larger context of earth system transformation, which, we argue, poses special challenges to the pursuit of accountability and legitimacy. Third, drawing on the contributions to this special section, we analyze different sources and mechanisms of accountability and legitimacy and their effects on the democratic potential and effectiveness of governance. Fourth, in concluding, we outline reform options that may help alleviate persisting deficits in the democratic potential of earth system governance
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1856-1864
JournalEcological Economics
Volume70
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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accountability
Governance
Accountability
Legitimacy

Keywords

  • global environmental assessments
  • private governance
  • transparency
  • south
  • organizations
  • institutions
  • communities
  • disclosure
  • politics
  • rule

Cite this

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Accountability and legitimacy in earth system governance: A research framework. / Biermann, F.; Gupta, A.

In: Ecological Economics, Vol. 70, No. 11, 2011, p. 1856-1864.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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AU - Gupta, A.

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KW - global environmental assessments

KW - private governance

KW - transparency

KW - south

KW - organizations

KW - institutions

KW - communities

KW - disclosure

KW - politics

KW - rule

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