International Regimes and Knowledge Production

The science and politics of climate change are intimately intertwined and their dynamic relationship to each other is a central theme in this dissertation. How can this dynamic relationship be understood? The purpose of this chapter is to review theoretical developments that are important for analyzing the history, process, and content of the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA). It lays out a theoretical frame for following chapters.

The chapter takes its point of departure in international relations theory with a focus on environmental regimes. However, regime theory has traditionally paid limited attention to the contingency and plurality of scientific knowledge. Therefore, the chapter will also review developments within science and technology studies focusing on the interplay between knowledge and power. The chapter is organized in four parts. The first part places the concept of regimes into the historical development of international relations theories and elaborates on how I will use the concept in this dissertation. The second part explores theories about the co-production of knowledge and political power. The third part addresses some basic epistemological issues, including the theoretical dichotomy between structure and agency. The fourth part presents in more detail some analytical concepts that are used throughout the dissertation.

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