The author maintains that the institutionalization of "sustainable development" at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) legitimized the evolution toward liberal environmentalism. Arguing that most of the literature on international environmental politics is too rationalist and problem-specific, Bernstein challenges the mainstream thinking on international cooperation by showing that it is always for some purpose or goal. His analysis of the norms that guide global environmental policy also challenges the often-presumed primacy of science in environmental governance.
For many scholars and policymakers the term captures important aspects of world politics. This unique volume delivers and compares the key perspectives of the leading thinkers in the area, equipping the reader with an excellent understanding of the debate now defining and mapping the future of this term.
This comparative approach is underpinned by a lucid theoretical framework which guides the reader towards building a clear sense of the debate and its complexities. A wide range of empirical issues are covered, including those of Security, International Political Economy, Environment, Human Rights, Social Movements and Regulation.
Including theorists of social constructivism, liberal imperialism and realism, this is an essential book for students and scholars which stimulates discussion and presents a fully rounded picture of global governance.