SPLEEN Band 4: Climate Policies

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Jiarui Zhong:

How Do Climate Policies Affect the Dynamics of Competition?

(Dissertation, 2023)



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In public discourse, climate policy is discussed from a variety of perspectives, which often lead to completely different policy proposals, especially as the economic, political science, natural science and moral aspects are rarely considered in an integrated manner. Furthermore, the knowledge base in the relevant scientific disciplines is often forgotten and the impression is conveyed that there is a clear allocation of resources for the goals to be achieved. Whether the use of economic instruments as part of economic policy is actually effective and efficient remains an open question in many respects. The resourceful human mind often succeeds in counteracting the desired policy with a "how to beat the system", as becomes clear in many areas of applied economic policy and the associated evaluation research, because rationality traps repeatedly emerge in the course of implementation. These are characterized by the fact that the sum of individually rational behavior leads to collectively undesirable results.

In this respect, the economic approach to climate policy enjoys far too little status among the public and political decision-makers, and it is a commendable achievement of the author to provide a theoretical and empirical assessment of a specific aspect, namely the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM), on the basis of targeted publications. In her thesis, which was accepted as a dissertation at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg in summer 2023, Jiarui Zhong, sets out the framework in four publications nested in the general line of discussion:

  1. Are there aspects that limit the transition, or better: its speed, to a defossilized economy in individual countries?
  2. What is the state of knowledge in the field of CBAM and how intensively have different aspects been investigated so far?
  3. What is the burden sharing of a CBAM system and on which measurable facts is it based?
  4. How are the results to be evaluated morally and on what ethical basis?

The thesis will hopefully provoke fruitful discussions following its intellectually challenging arguments.


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122 Seiten
Format A4