Boundary organizations in regime complexes: a social network profile of IPBES

  • Jean-Frédéric Morin
  • Sélim Louafi
  • Amandine Orsini
  • Mohamed Oubenal
Article

Abstract

Regime complexes are arrays of institutions with partially overlapping mandates and memberships. As tensions frequently arise among these institutions, there is a growing interest geared to finding strategies to reduce them. Insights from regime theory, science and technology studies, and social network analysis support the claim that “boundary organizations”—a type of organization until now overlooked in International Relations—can reduce tensions within regime complexes by generating credible, legitimate, and salient knowledge, provided that their internal networks balance multiple knowledge dimensions. Building on this argument, this article offers an ex ante assessment of the recently created International Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). Results from our network analysis of IPBES point to clear improvements compared with similar organizations, although major deficiencies remain. The contribution of this article is threefold. Methodologically, it introduces new conceptual and technical tools to assess the “social representativeness” of international organizations. Theoretically, it supports the claim that international organizations are penetrated by transnational networks and, consequently, that the proliferation of institutions tends to reproduce structural imbalances. Normatively, it argues that a revision of nomination processes could improve the ability of boundary organizations to generate salient, credible, and legitimate knowledge.

Keywords

international institutions regime complex boundary organization biodiversity social network analysis IPBES 

References

  1. Abbott, Kenneth W. (2012) ‘The Transnational Regime Complex for Climate Change’, Environment & Planning C: Government & Policy 30(4): 571–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Abbott, Kenneth W. and Duncan Snidal (2010) ‘International Regulation without International Government: Improving IO Performance through Orchestration’, Review of International Organizations 5(3): 315–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Abbott, Kenneth W., Jessica F. Green and Robert O. Keohane (2015) ‘Organizational Ecology and Institutional Change in Global Governance’, International Organization, forthcoming.Google Scholar
  4. Alter, Karen J. and Sophie Meunier (2009) ‘The Politics of International Regime Complexity’, Perspectives on Politics 7(1): 13–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Amano, Tatsuya and William J. Sutherland (2013) ‘Four Barriers to the Global Understanding of Biodiversity Conservation: Wealth, Language, Geographical Location and Security’, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 280(1756): 1–7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Andersen, Regine (2008) Governing Agrobiodiversity: Plant Genetics and Developing Countries, Farnham: Ashgate.Google Scholar
  7. Aoki, Keith and Kennedy Luvai (2007) ‘Reclaiming Common Heritage Treatment in the International Plant Genetic Resources Regime Complex’, Michigan State Law Review 35: 35–70.Google Scholar
  8. Barbault, Robert and Jean-Patrick Leduc (2005) Proceedings of the International Conference on Biodiversity, Science and Governance for Sustainable Development, 23–28 January. Paris: UNESCO.Google Scholar
  9. Beck, Silke (2011) ‘Moving Beyond the Linear Model of Expertise? IPCC and the Test of Adaptation’, Regional Environmental Change 11(2): 297–306.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Beck, Silke, Maud Borie, Jason Chilvers, Alejandro Esguerra, Katja Heubach, Mike Hulme, Rolf Lidskog, Eva Lövbrand, Elisabeth Marquard, Clark Miller, Tahani Nadim, Carsten Neßhöver, Josef Settele, Esther Turnhout, Eleftheria Vasileiadou and Christoph Görg (2014) ‘Towards a Reflexive Turn in the Governance of Global Environmental Expertise. The Cases of the IPCC and the IPBES’, GAIA-Ecological Perspectives for Science and Society 23(2): 80–87.Google Scholar
  11. Benvenisti, Eval and George Downs (2007) ‘The Empire’s New Clothes: Political Economy and the Fragmentation of International Law’, Stanford Law Review 60(2): 595–631.Google Scholar
  12. Berkes, Fikret (2009) ‘Evolution of Co-management: Role of Knowledge Generation, Bridging Organizations and Social Learning’, Journal of Environmental Management 90(5): 1692–702.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Biermann, Frank, Philipp Pattberg, Harro Van Asselt (2009) ‘The Fragmentation of Global Governance Architectures: A Framework for Analysis’, Global Environmental Politics 9(4): 14–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Bjurström, Andreas and Merritt Polk (2011) ‘Physical and Economic Bias in Climate Change Research: A Scientometric Study of IPCC Third Assessment Report’, Climatic Change 108(1–2): 1–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Borie, Maud and Mike Hulme (2015) ‘Framing Global Biodiversity: IPBES between Mother Earth and Ecosystem Services’, Environmental Science & Policy 54: 487–496.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Böhmelt, Tobias and Gabriele Spilker (2015) ‘The Interaction of International Institutions from a Social Network Perspective’, International Environmental Agreements, forthcoming.Google Scholar
  17. Brand, Ulrich and Alice Vadrot (2013) ‘Epistemic Selectivities and the Valorisation of Nature: the Cases of the Nagoya Protocol and the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES)’, Law, Environment and Development Journal 9(2): 202–20.Google Scholar
  18. Brand, Ulrich and Christoph Görg (2013) ‘Regimes in Global Environmental Governance and the Internationalization of the State: The Case of Biodiversity Politics’, International Journal of Social Science Studies 1(1): 110–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Briggs, Sue V. and Andrew T. Knight (2011) ‘Science-Policy Interface: Scientific Input Limited’, Science 333(6043): 696–97.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Cash, David W., Niel W. Adger, Fikret Berkes, Po Garden, Louis Lebel, Per Olsson, Lowell Pritchard, and Oran Young (2006) ‘Scale and Cross-Scale Dynamics: Governance and Information in a Multilevel World’, Ecology & Society 11(2): 8–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Cash, David W., William C. Clark, Frank Alcock, Nancy M. Dickson, Noelle Eckley, David H. Guston, Jill Jäger, Ronald B. Mitchel (2003) ‘Knowledge Systems for Sustainable Development’, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 100(14): 8086–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Clark, William. Tomich Thomas, Meine Van Noordwijk, Nancy Dickson, Delia Catacutan, David Guston and Elizabeth McNie (2010) Toward a General Theory of Boundary Work: Insights from the CGIAR’s Natural Resource Management Programs. Harvard Kennedy School.Google Scholar
  23. Coleman, James (1988) ‘Social Capital in the Creation of Human Capital’, American Journal of Sociology 94: 95–120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Corbera, Esteve, Laura Calvet-Mir, Hannah Hughes and Matthew Paterson (2015) ‘Patterns of authorship in the IPCC Working Group III Report’, Nature Climate Change, doi:10.1038/nclimate2782.Google Scholar
  25. Crona, Beatrice I. and John N. Parker (2011) ‘Network Determinants of Knowledge Utilization Preliminary Lessons from a Boundary Organization’, Science Communication 33(4): 448–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Daccache, Michel (2013) ‘Questioning Biodiversity Governance through Its Articulations’, Science Technology & Society, 18(1): 51–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Davis, Christina L. (2009) ‘Overlapping Institutions in Trade Policy’, Perspectives on Politics 7(1): 25–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Diaz, Sandra, Sebsebe Demissew, Carlos Joly, Mark Lonsdale and Anne Larigaudrie (2015) ‘A Rosetta Stone for Nature’s Benefit to People’, PLoS Biology 13(1): e1002040.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Drezner, Daniel W (2009) ‘The Power and Peril of International Regime Complexity’, Perspectives on Politics 7(1): 65–70.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Duit, Andreas and Victor Galaz (2008) ‘Governance and Complexity—Emerging Issues for Governance Theory’, Governance 21(3): 311–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Duraiappah, Anantha Kumar and Deborah Rogers (2011) ‘The Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: Opportunities for the Social Sciences’, European Journal of Social Science 24(3): 217–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Fourcade, Marion, Etienne Ollion and Yann Algan (2015) ‘The Superiority of Economists’, Journal of Economic Perspectives 29(1): 89–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Gehring, Thomas and Benjamin Faude (2014) ‘A Theory of Emerging Order within Institutional Complexes’, Review of International Organizations 9(4): 471–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Gehring, Thomas and Sebastian Oberthür (2009) ‘The Causal Mechanisms of Interaction between International Institutions’, European Journal of International Relations 15(1): 125–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Gepts, Paul 2006. ‘Plant Genetic Resources Conservation and Utilization’, Crop Science 46(5): 2278.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Gieryn, Thomas F. (1983) ‘Boundary-Work and the Demarcation of Science from Non-Science: Strains and Interests in Professional Ideologies of Scientists’, American Sociological Review 48(6), 781–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Görg, Christoph, Carsten Neßhöver, and Axel Paulsch (2010) ‘A New Link between Biodiversity Science and Policy’, Perspectives for Science 19(3): 183–86.Google Scholar
  38. Granjou, Céline. Isabelle Mauz Séverine Louvel and Virginie Tournay (2013) ‘Assessing Nature? The Genesis of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES)’, Science Technology & Society 18(1): 9–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Green, Jessica F (2013) ‘Order Out of Chaos: Public and Private Rules for Managing Carbon’, Global Environmental Politics 13(2): 1–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Gupta, Aarti, Till Pistorius and Marjanneke J. Vijge (2015) ‘Managing Fragmentation in Global Environmental Governance: the REDD + Partnership as Bridge Organization’, International Environmental Agreement, forthcoming.Google Scholar
  41. Guston, David H (2001) ‘Boundary Organizations in Environmental Policy and Science: An Introduction’, Science, Technology, and Human Values 21: 399–408.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Haas, Ernst B (1980) ‘Why Collaborate’, World Politics 32(3): 357–405.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Hafner-Burton, Emilie Miles, Kahler M, and Alexander H. Montgomery (2009) ‘Network Analysis for International Relations’, International Organization 63(03): 559–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Holmes, George (2011) ‘Conservation’s Friends in High Places: Neoliberalism, Networks, and the Transnational Conservation Elite’, Global Environmental Politics 11(4): 1–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Hulme, Mike, Martin Mahony, Silke Beck, Christoph Görg, Bernd Hansjürgens, Jennifer Hauck, Carsten Nesshöver, Axel Paulsch, Marie Vandewalle, Heidi Wittmer, Stefan Böschen, Peter Bridgewater, Mariteuw Chimère Diaw, Pierre Fabre, Aurelia Figueroa, Kong Luen Heong, Horst Korn, Rik Leemans, Eva Lövbrand, Mohd Norowi Hamid, Chad Monfreda, Roger Pielke Jr., Josef Settele, Marten Winter, Alice B. M. Vadrot, Sybille van den Hove, and Jeroen P. van der Sluijs (2011) ‘Science-Policy Interface: Beyond Assessments’, Science 333(6043): 697–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Humair, Franziska, Peter Edwards, Michael Siegrist, and Christoph Kueffer (2014) ‘Understanding Misunderstandings in Invasion Science: Why Experts Don’t Agree on Common Concepts and Risk Assessments’, NeoBiota 20: 1–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. IPBES interim bureau. n.d. a. Findings of the Global IPBES Assessment Survey.Google Scholar
  48. IPBES interim bureau. n.d. b. IPBES Selection Process for the MEPReview Draft. Google Scholar
  49. Jasanoff, Sheila (1996) ‘Is Science Socially Constructed—And Can it still Inform Public Policy?’, Science and Engineering Ethics 2(3): 263–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Johnson, Tana and Johannes Urpelainen (2012) ‘A Strategic Theory of Regime Integration and Separation’, International Organization 66(4): 645–77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Kelley, Judith (2009) ‘The More the Merrier? The Effects of Having Multiple International Election Monitoring Organizations’, Perspectives on Politics 7(1): 59–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Kellow, Aynsley (2012) ‘Multi-Level and Multi-Arena Governance: the Limits of Integration and the Possibilities of Forum Shopping’, International Environmental Agreements 12(4): 327–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Keohane, Robert O. and Victor, David G. (2011) ‘The Regime Complex for Climate Change’, Perspectives on Politics 9(1): 7–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Kim, Rakhyun E. and Brendan Mackey (2014) ‘International Environmental Law as a Complex Adaptive System’, International Environmental Agreements 14: 5–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Koetz, Thomas, Peter Bridgewater, Sybille Van Den Hove and Bernd Seibenhümer (2008) ‘The role of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to the Convention on Biological Diversity as science–policy interface’, Environmental Science & Policy 11(6): 505–516.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Koetz, Thomas, Katharine N. Farrell, and Peter Bridgewater (2012) ‘Building Better Science-Policy Interfaces for International Environmental Governance: Assessing Potential within the Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’, International Environmental Agreements 12(1): 1–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Kovács, Eszter Krasznai and Gyögy Pataki (2016) ‘The Participation of Experts and Knowledges in the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’, Environmental Science & Policy 57: 131–139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Kutting, Gabriela and Lipschutz, Ronnie (2009) Environmental Governance, Power and Knowledge in a Local Global World. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  59. Larigauderie, Anne and Harold A. Mooney (2010) ‘The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: Moving a Step Closer to an IPCC-Like Mechanism for Biodiversity’, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 2: 9–14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Lazer, David (2011) ‘Networks in Political Science: Back to the Future’, PS: Political Science & Politics 44(1): 61–68.Google Scholar
  61. Le Prestre, Philippe ed. (2002) Governing Global Biodiversity, The Evolution and Implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Brookfield: Ashgate.Google Scholar
  62. Lebel, Louis, Torsten Grothmann and Bernd Siebenhüner (2010) ‘The Role of Social Learning in Adaptiveness: Insights from Water Management’, International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics 10(4): 333–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Lemos, Maria Carmen, and Barbara J. Morehouse (2005) ‘The Co-Production of Science and Policy in Integrated Climate Assessments’, Global Environmental Change 15(1): 57–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Lidskog, Rolf and Göran Sundqvist (2015) ‘When Does Science Matter? International Relations Meets Sciences and Technology Studies’, Global Environmental Politics 15(1): 1–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Martello, Marybeth Long (2004) ‘Expert Advice and Desertification Policy: Past Experience and Current Challenges’, Global Environmental Politics 4(3): 85–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Michaels, Sarah (2009) ‘Matching Knowledge Brokering Strategies to Environmental Policy Problems and Settings’, Environmental Science and Policy 12: 994–1011.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Miller, Clark (2001) ‘Hybrid Management: Boundary Organizations, Science Policy, and Environmental Governance in the Climate Regime’, Science, Technology & Human Values 26(4): 478–500.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Morin, Jean-Frédéric and Amandine Orsini (2014) ‘Policy Coherence and Regime Complexes: The Case of Genetic Resources’, Review of International Studies 40: 303–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Morse, Julia C. and Keohane, Robert O. (2014) ‘Contested Multilateralism’, Review of International Organizations 9(4): 385–412.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Muzaka, Valbona (2011) ‘Linkages, Contests and Overlaps in the Global Intellectual Property Rights Regime’, European Journal of International Relations 17(4): 755–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Newman, Mark E.J. (2004) ‘Coauthorship Networks and Patterns of Scientific Collaboration’, PNAS 101 (Suppl. 1): 5200–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Oberthür, Sebastian (2009) ‘Interplay Management: Enhancing Environmental Policy Integration among International Institutions’, International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics 9(4): 371–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Oberthür, Sebastian and Justyna Pożarowska (2013) ‘Managing Institutional Complexity and Fragmentation: The Nagoya Protocol and the Global Governance of Genetic Resources’, Global Environmental Politics 13(3): 100–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Oberthür, Sebastian and Olav Schram Stokke eds. (2011) Managing Institutional Complexity: Regime Interplay and Global Environmental Change. Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  75. Olsson, Per, Carl Folke and Fikret Berkes (2004) ‘Adaptive Co-Management for Building Resilience in Social-ecological Systems’, Environmental Management 34: 75–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Ovodenko, Alexander and Keohane, Robert O. (2012) ‘Institutional Diffusion in International Environmental Affairs’, International Affairs 88(3): 523–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Paavola, Jouni, Andrew Gouldson, and Tatiana Kluvánková‐Oravská (2009) ‘Interplay of Actors, Scales, Frameworks and Regimes in the Governance of Biodiversity’, Environmental Policy and Governance 19(3): 148–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Perrings, Charles, Anantha Duraiappah, Anna Larigauderie and Harrold Mooney (2011) ‘The Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Science-Policy Interface’, Science 331(4): 1133–139.Google Scholar
  79. Posey, Darrell Addison ed. (1999) Cultural and Spiritual Values of Biodiversity. London: United Nations Environmental Programme & Intermediate Technology Publications.Google Scholar
  80. Radaelli, Claudio (1995) ‘The Role of Knowledge in the Policy Process’, Journal of European Public Policy 2: 159–83.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Rammel, Christian, Sigrid Stagl and Harald Wilfing (2007) ‘Managing Complex Adaptive systems—A Co-evolutionary Perspective on Natural Resource Management’, Ecological Economics 63(1): 9–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Raustiala, Kal, and David Victor (2004) ‘The Regime Complex for Plant Genetic Resources’, International Organization 58: 277–309.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Reid, Walter V. Fikret Berkes, Thomas J. Wilbanks and Doris Capistrano eds. (2006) Bridging Scales and Knowledge Systems. Concepts and Applications in Ecosystem Assessment. Washington: Island Press.Google Scholar
  84. Rosendal, Kristin G. (2001) ‘Impacts of Overlapping International Regimes: The Case of Biodiversity’, Global Governance 7: 95–117.Google Scholar
  85. Scott, Karen N. (2011) ‘International Environmental Governance: Managing Fragmentation through Institutional Connection’, Melbourne Journal of International Law 12(1): 10–13.Google Scholar
  86. Seabrooke, Leonard (2014) ‘Epistemic Arbitrage: Transnational Professional Knowledge in Action’, Journal of Professions and Organization 1(1): 1–16.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  87. Stokke, Olav Schram (2001) The Interplay of International Regimes: Putting Effectiveness Theory to Work. FNI report 14.Google Scholar
  88. Stone, Diane (2013) ‘Shades of Grey: The World Bank, Knowledge Networks and Linked Ecologies of Academic Engagement’, Global Network 13(2): 241–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  89. Sutherland, William, J. Toby A. Gardner L. Jamila Haider and Lynn V. Dicks (2013) ‘How can Local and Traditional Knowledge Be Effectively Incorporated into International Assessments?’, Oryx 48(1): 1–2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  90. Swanson, Timothy (1999) ‘Why Is There a Biodiversity Convention? The International Interest in Centralized Development Planning’, International Affairs 75(2): 307–331.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  91. Swanson, Timothy and Ben Groom (2012) ‘Regulating Global Biodiversity: What is the Problem?’, Oxford Review of Economic Policy 28(1): 114–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  92. Ten Kate, Kerry and Sarah Laird (2000) ‘Biodiversity and Business: Coming to Terms with the Grand Bargain’, International Affairs 76(2): 241–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  93. Turnhout, Esther, Art Dewulf and Mike Hulme (2016) ‘What Does Policy-Relevance Global Environmental Knowledge Do? The Cases of Climate and Biodiversity’, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 18: 65–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  94. UNEP (2010) Report of the Third ad hoc Intergovernmental and Multi-Stakeholder Meeting on an Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, Busan, 7–11 June 2010, UNEP/IPBES/3/3.Google Scholar
  95. UNEP (2012) Report of the Second Session of the Plenary Meeting to Determine Modalities and Institutional Arrangements for an Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, Panama City, 16–21 April 2012, UNEP/IPBES.MI/2/9.Google Scholar
  96. Vadrot, Alice (2014) The Politics of Knowledge and Global Biodiversity. Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
  97. Visseren-Hamakers, Ingrid J., Bas Arts, and Pieter, Glasbergen (2011) ‘Interaction Management by Partnerships: The Case of Biodiversity and Climate Change. Global Environmental Politics 11(4): 89–107.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  98. Young, Oran R. (1996) ‘Institutional Linkages in International Society: Polar Perspectives. Global Governance 2(1): 1–24.Google Scholar
  99. Young, Oran R. (2006) Vertical Interplay among Scale Dependent Resource Regimes. Ecology and Society 11(1): 27–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  100. Young, Oran R. (2010) ‘Institutional Dynamics: Resilience, Vulnerability and Adaptation in Environmental and Resource Regimes. Global Environmental Change 20: 378–85.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean-Frédéric Morin
    • 1
  • Sélim Louafi
    • 1
  • Amandine Orsini
    • 1
  • Mohamed Oubenal
    • 1
  1. 1.Political Science DepartmentUniversité LavalQuébecCanada

Personalised recommendations