Governing carbon: China in global climate politics

Fang, Szu-hung (2012) Governing carbon: China in global climate politics. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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Abstract

The aim of this thesis is to examine the dynamics of China’s engagement with global
climate change. After critically reviewing mainstream neo-realist and neo-liberal
institutionalist approaches to International Relations and climate change, the thesis
develops a revised governmentality framework based on a critical engagement with
critical IPE and Foucauldian approaches. This provides the basis for an analytical
framework focusing on four distinct ‘rationalities of government’ in China’s climate
change politics and governance, which are sovereignty, development, market and the
environment. The genealogical examination of these four governmental rationalities has
demonstrated the dynamics among them and the relations of state/society/party in
China. By applying this analytical framework, the thesis critically examines two
distinctive fields of China’s climate change politics: international politics and the Clean
Development Mechanism in China. The thesis argues that although neo-liberal
governmentality appears dominant in global climate politics, the case study of China
reveals different dynamics in which the rationalities of sovereignty and development
have played the more influential roles. By contrast, the market rationality has been
instrumentalised in China for the pursuit of economic growth and the environmental
rationality has been marginalised. The thesis contends that the uneven relations among
these rationalities have to be grasped through historical and contextual exploration.
Different paths and mentalities of state formation and modernisation have had
significant influences on China’s politics and governance of climate change in both
international and domestic levels. The findings from this research help to explain the
changes and continuities in China’s positions in international climate negotiations, in its
regulation of the carbon market, and in the formation of climate knowledge and
mentalities under the rule of the Communist Party

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > International Relations
Subjects: Q Science > QC Physics > QC0851 Meteorology. Climatology Including the earth's atmosphere > QC0980 Climatology and weather > QC0981.8.A-Z Special topics, A-Z > QC0982 Geographic divisions > QC0990.C6 China
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2012 10:22
Last Modified: 08 Sep 2015 12:24
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/42963

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