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Mónika López Anuarbe

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Following the difficult path to forming a robust international climate change coalition, attention has turned to the growing number of subnational governments engaging in collective action. The purpose of this thesis is to explore the importance of trust between policymakers in establishing and maintaining cooperation within North American subnational climate coalitions. After the introduction, the incentives for collective action and the emergence of American and Canadian subnational coalitions are discussed in the first section; the second section proposes a methodology to measure trust and defines strategies available to actors; the third section models trust in games of increasing complexity. Results show that trust changes the expected utility of available strategies. The impact of trust on cooperation varies by the type of strategist: trust increases cooperation for conditional cooperators, but decreases cooperation for conditional defectors. As climate policy negotiations occur over time, trust should be repeatedly evaluated to reflect the changing economic and political circumstances of subnational actors in order to reveal opportunities for further collective action.



The views expressed in this paper are solely those of the author.