Latent influence networks in global environmental politics

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Authors Benjamin W. Campbell, Frank W. Marrs, Tobias Boehmelt, Bailey K. Fosdick, Skyler J. Cranmer
Journal/Conference Name PloS one
Paper Category
Paper Abstract International environmental treaties are the key means by which states overcome collective action problems and make specific commitments to address environmental issues. However, systematically assessing states' influence in promoting global environmental protection has proven difficult. Analyzing newly compiled data with a purpose-built statistical model, we provide a novel measurement of state influence within the scope of environmental politics and find strong influences among states and treaties. Specifically, we report evidence that states are less likely to ratify when states within their region ratify, and results suggesting that countries positively influence other countries at similar levels of economic development. By examining several prominent treaties, we illustrate the complex nature of influence: a single act of ratification can dramatically reshape global environmental politics. More generally, our findings and approach provide an innovative means to understand the evolution and complexity of international environmental protection.
Date of publication 2019
Code Programming Language R

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