Demanding Policy Change, Taking Direct Action, or Promoting Alternatives:
Explaining Differences and Overlaps in Strategic Preferences within the Climate Change Movement
This paper aims to explain how such strategic differences ultimately drive the internationally coordinated mobilization of the climate movement for COP21 (Paris, 2015). It combines 14 months of observations from meetings and actions with more than 40 qualitative interviews. As a theoretical framework, the paper starts from a political opportunity structure approach, assuming that variations in these strategic preferences can to an important extent be explained by variations in organizers’ perception of contextual opportunities. Nevertheless, other factors, like activist traditions, resources and decision making processes are taken into account as well. The paper aims to make a strong contribution to our understanding of strategic variations within the climate change movement, the development of transnational mobilizations, and the role of POSs in these processes.