Interplay management: enhancing environmental policy integration among international institutions

Original Paper

Abstract

This article investigates how and to what extent the current management of inter-institutional relationships within International Environmental Governance (‘interplay management’) contributes to Environmental Policy Integration (EPI), and identifies options for enhancing EPI among international institutions. To this end, it first develops a framework for the systematic analysis and assessment of interplay management as a means for achieving ‘strong’ EPI, distinguishing four levels and two principal modes of management. On this basis, the article assesses the current contribution of International Environmental Governance to advancing EPI as regards three categories of institutional interaction. The analysis demonstrates the need to fit interplay management to the particular governance conditions of varying interaction situations and highlights the lack of systematic and consistent support for EPI among international institutions. Options to improve this situation include in particular promoting inter-institutional learning and assistance for the benefit of environmental institutions as well as ensuring consideration of and respect for environmental requirements. Adapting the statutes and mandates of individual institutions and developing suitable guidance under general international (environmental) law have the highest potential for implementing these options. In contrast, joint management initiatives and a strengthened international environmental organisation have a much more limited, supplementary potential.

Keywords

Environmental Policy Integration International Environmental Governance Institutional interaction Institutional interplay International environmental policy International institutions Interplay management Multilateral Environmental Agreements 

Abbreviations

CITES

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora

EPI

Environmental Policy Integration

IEG

International Environmental Governance

MEA

Multilateral Environmental Agreement

OECD

Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development

UNEP

United Nations Environment Programme

WCO

World Customs Organisation

WEO

World Environment Organisation

WTO

World Trade Organisation

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for European StudiesVrije Universiteit BrusselBrusselsBelgium

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