Hernandez Gongora Shares Research on Polycentric Governance in Climate Change Policies

Posted on Tuesday, May 21st, 2019

Rural studies PhD candidate, Lissel Hernandez Gongora, conducted a webinar last May 8th in coordination with the Rural Policy Learning Commons. Lissel spoke about polycentric governance in climate change policies. The presentation included: 1)The theory of polycentric governance, 2) The case study implementation of REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) in Mexico as an example of the polycentric approach in climate change policies, and 3) Recommendations for decision-makers. After the presentation, participants asked several questions to the presenter who provided more information on the requested topics. 

The presenter explained that polycentric governance is a form of decision-making that involves multiple levels of authority and multiple sectors representatives under a shared system of rules to regulate their relationships. Elinor Ostrom proposed Polycentric Governance as an effective approach to address global environmental problems such as climate change. Polycentric Governance has the potential to facilitate functions such as actors’ participation and influence in decision-making, information sharing, knowledge exchange/learning, financial coordination, conflict resolution and creation of trust.

Lissel highlighted that polycentric governance does not automatically translate into positive impacts in achieving climate change mitigation and adaptation goals. Efforts to create functional institutional arrangements might exceed the actual implementation of strategies and action plans. When adopting a polycentric approach in climate change policy, some recommendation are: Allowing all actors to have a say in decision-making to keep them engaged, developing adequate information sharing tools and a clear message, promoting capacity development for local actors, building in past experiences by exchanging best practices, creating internal rules to solve potential conflict, promoting transparency in decision-making and implementation. 

A copy of the webinar recording and the PowerPoint presentation can be found at https://www.brandonu.ca/rdi/webinars-and-speaker-series/



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