The manifest inadequacies of the inter-state negotiating processes central to international climate change policy create a pressing need for innovative modes of governance. This paper proposes one promising and feasible approach: constructing a transnational climate change regime. A transnational regime would forge stronger cross-border links among non-state actors and organizations, allowing them to address climate issues in a coordinated and collaborative manner. It would operate at multiple levels of authority and scale, enabling transnational institutions to directly engage and address intra-governmental, sub-state and societal actors within target countries. In this way the regime would bypass the governments of recalcitrant states, and of states lacking governance capacity. A transnational regime would also manage recalcitrant states by focusing advocacy, creating demonstration effects and otherwise mobilizing pressure on governments. Transnational regime entrepreneurs using a strategy of orchestration could deploy a range of incentives and other tools of influence to enroll, support and steer participating organizations, and to encourage public and private targets to accept voluntary standards and programs. The regime would complement inter-state actions where they exist, and would partially substitute for them where they do not.
climate change, transnational governance, non-state actors, regime, multi-level governance, polycentric governance