Posted on September 30, 2015 by Tia Lalani

Submit an Environmental Politics paper to the Canadian Political Science conference, May 31-June 2nd, 2016 in Calgary.

Environmental Scholars,

Are you thinking of going to the Canadian Political Science conference, May 31-June 2nd, 2016 in Calgary, Alberta? Please consider submitting your paper to our environmental politics workshop. We are Kate Neville and Andrea Olive from the University of Toronto political science department (Kate is cross-appointed to the School of Environment and Andrea is cross-appointed to the department of geography). We are proposing a workshop on environmental politics that is broken down into 5 panels. See descriptions below. Note that these descriptions are flexible and can change before we submit the proposal to CPSA.

Right now we are looking for abstracts as well as panel discussants and panel chairs. Each panel is open with regard to topic (climate change, biodiversity, fracking, food systems, Indigenous politics, biofuels etc.). Each panel is also open with regard to methodology. Our workshop proposal is due to CPSA by Oct. 15th, so we are asking for abstracts for this workshop by Oct. 7th.

Please circulate this call-out widely. If you have questions or comments, please let us know. Abstracts can be submitted to Andrea Olive at this email address ( Along with the abstract be sure to include which panel you see your paper fitting into.

All the best,
Andrea Olive and Kate Neville

Workshop Title: Environmental Politics

Abstract: The field of environmental politics is wide-ranging, expansive, and prolific, and many rich discussions are taking place across thematic areas and topics. Canadian political science scholars and their colleagues around the world are engaging with the themes of environmental change and governance in new, innovative, and boundary-pushing ways. Using a thematic approach, this workshop aims to foster conversation, collaboration, critique, and community-building across this emerging and cross-cutting subfield of political science.

Panel 1: Private/Hybrid/Shifting Governance

Abstract: Research abounds on the changing nature of environmental governance, with particular attention to private and hybrid alternatives to state-based systems of control and decision-making. How do private actors exert authority in environmental politics, and how and why are their strategies changing? What tools of governance are being developed to address environmental challenges and their social and political causes and consequences? And how are these forms of private and hybrid governance acting to complement or supplement state actions, and subvert or strengthen state power?

Panel 2: Multi-scale/Cross Border Governance

Abstract: Environmental governance occurs across multiple levels of government, from the local to the international, and includes numerous non-state actors. What opportunities and challenges does this create for effective models of governance?

Panel 3: Sustainability Transitions and Innovations

Abstract: With governments around the world beginning to acknowledge the urgent need for new energy futures, development trajectories, and economic models, new opportunities are emerging to imagine and enact alternative, sustainable forms of social and material organization. With building political and social interest in these new directions, why are sustainability transitions continuing to prove so difficult? What social norms and political institutions are facilitating these shifts or stymying this change; and what innovative discourses, incentives, strategies, and technologies might catalyze more transformative change?

Panel 4: Contested Sovereignty and Land Rights

Abstract: Across the planet, indigenous communities are seeking–and gaining–recognition, rights, and governance power. New alliances within and across indigenous and other civil society groups, new legal channels for claiming land rights and contesting territorial infringements, and new forms of outreach and communication through media platforms are changing the ways in which sovereignty contests are unfolding in many countries. In this panel, we seek to explore the effects of strengthened political voices from marginalized communities on resource governance and land control, with implications for food systems, energy developments, and the very authority of nation-states.

Panel 5: Comparative Environmental Policy

Abstract: Environmental scholars have made important contributions to public policy theory, including policy process, policy change, and the study of institutions and actors. Comparisons across time, countries, provinces, or regions help to advance our understanding of public policy. Papers that are theoretically rich and offer a comparative framework on any environmental issue are welcome.

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