Emerging Meta-Organisation in Global Climate Change Regimes: The Work of Intermediaries

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 16:15
Oral Presentation
Abrar CHAUDHURY, Said Business School - University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Marc VENTRESCA, Said Business School - University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Background and arguments

Climate change is now widely recognized by scientists and most policy-makers as one of the critical global threats. The urgency for global coordinated action with national applications birthed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1992 (UNFCCC), a ‘meta-organisation’ with 165 signatory countries. There is too little research on how the member organizations in a meta-organization regime interact within a common framework (set by meta-organisation), innovate, manage interdependency and information flow that produce capacity, develop aims and objectives, and recognise pivotal points. We focus on the role of intermediary actors that ‘connect’ across broad organizational communities in national regimes:

  • What are the intermediary agencies becoming visible in the transnational meta-organization but also in country-specific regimes? What do they do and how do they connect with the wider meta-organization?
  • What kinds of challenges and ambiguity do these organizations confront, and what are typical solutions they use – either structural connections, organizational forms, brokering or information gathering and sharing, and/or others?

Research strategy and discussion

We make use of original data from the first author’s dissertation on the organization of climate change adaptation in countries in Africa and Asia (Chaudhury et al 2016, 2017), including surveys, field work, and network analysis. We augment these data with key interviews with leading agencies and policy elites to map the terrain of intermediary organizations working to set standards, define and resolve ambiguity in process and outcome, and sort conflicts across policy levels. We use a network-informed understanding of meta-organization and component organizational elements (Chaudhury et al). Meta-organisations across a policy continuum provide intermediary information, standards, and solutions. We focus on the ways that intermediaries agencies ’translate’ and ‘do the work’ to support component countries in the meta-organization.