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University of Gothenburg
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Theme 5: Conceptualizing large-scale collective action

Intends to answer the question: What is the nature and characteristics of large-scale collective action compared with collective action in general and small-scale collective action in particular?

Projects within Theme 5:

This project aims to develop a theoretical framework that properly define the concept of large-scale collective action, compared to collective action more in general and small-scale in particular. The framework will then be applied to various large scale collective action problems.

Participants: The CeCAR PI group.

Theme: 4 and 5

Publication: Publication of Perspective paper in Ambio: Jagers, S. C., Harring, N., Löfgren, Å., Sjöstedt, M., Alpizar, F., Brülde, B., ... & Steffen, W. (2020). On the preconditions for large-scale collective action. Ambio, 49(7), 1282-1296.

International cooperation requires policy compliance to be sustainable, and non-compliance is therefore a serious challenge in the European Union (EU). While much research has been devoted to explain non-compliance in the EU, less attention has been given to the effects of non-compliance. Founded in collective action theory, a central prediction is that the chances of generating cooperative agreements between nation states is affected by expectations about policy compliance. The project poses questions on whether expectations about policy compliance affect the current and future will to collective action, and what factors that affect the perceived risk of non-compliance. Empirically, the focus is on negotiation processes between representatives of EU member states, relying on a telephone survey with representatives to the EU Council, and comparative case studies of policy issues in the fields of human and animal antibiotics use, migration and foreign policy.

Participants: Markus Johansson, Department of Political Science.

Theme: 3 and 5

The purpose of this research is to provide policy and regulatory alternatives for marine governance  in the Arctic marine environment from an ecosystem approach and multi-scale perspective including an analysis of the challenges, legitimacy, and opportunities of international nudging, i.e., “low-cost, choice-preserving, behaviorally informed approaches to regulatory problems.”10 The research will expose governance gaps regarding environmental conservation and resource management and give solutions directed at the preservation of ecological services provided by the Arctic marine environment. This research is directly linked to two sustainable development goals, i.e., goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts and goal 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.11

The main research questions are:

  • What are the regulatory alternatives to achieve a comprehensive marine governance in Arctic Marine Environment?
  • Can behavioural regulatory options, such as, opt-in / op-out arrangements in treaties, goal settings, and rankings contribute to MSP of Arctic Marine Environment? And if so, how?
  • What are the legitimacy issues regarding behavioural regulatory alternatives?

Participants: Gabriela Argüellos Department of Law, University of Gothenburg

Theme: 3 and 5

While companies have recently paid dearly, in compensation and reputational damage, for corporate scandals in relation to unethical business conduct and significant negative human rights impacts, a significant focus has now turned to professional advisors, most notably lawyers, in their potential failure to advise their clients of the ethical impacts of their business decisions. Through the concept of indirect moral responsibility, I aim to reflect on the role of lawyers and the legal profession in advising their clients on business transactions in relation to business ethics and human rights impacts. Furthermore, by elaborating on the moral responsibility that the legal profession has in the ethical conduct of their clients, I will highlight the potential opportunities for large scale collective action that the legal profession could create based on the recognition of their role in ethical business conduct.

Participant: Jasmine Elliott (Department of Philosophy, Linguistics, Theory of Science)

Theme: 3 and 5