Peter Dauvergne

Peter Dauvergne is Professor of International Relations at the University of British Columbia. He is the author of The Shadows of Consumption: Consequences for the Global Environment and Eco-Business: A Big-Brand Takeover of Sustainability (with Jane Lister), both published by the MIT Press.

  • Environmentalism of the Rich

    Environmentalism of the Rich

    Peter Dauvergne

    What it means for global sustainability when environmentalism is dominated by the concerns of the affluent—eco-business, eco-consumption, wilderness preservation.

    Over the last fifty years, environmentalism has emerged as a clear counterforce to the environmental destruction caused by industrialization, colonialism, and globalization. Activists and policymakers have fought hard to make the earth a better place to live. But has the environmental movement actually brought about meaningful progress toward global sustainability? Signs of global “unsustainability” are everywhere, from decreasing biodiversity to scarcity of fresh water to steadily rising greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, as Peter Dauvergne points out in this provocative book, the environmental movement is increasingly dominated by the environmentalism of the rich—diverted into eco-business, eco-consumption, wilderness preservation, energy efficiency, and recycling. While it's good that, for example, Barbie dolls' packaging no longer depletes Indonesian rainforest, and that Toyota Highlanders are available as hybrids, none of this gets at the source of the current sustainability crisis. More eco-products can just mean more corporate profits, consumption, and waste.

    Dauvergne examines extraction booms that leave developing countries poor and environmentally devastated—with the ruination of the South Pacific island of Nauru a case in point; the struggles against consumption inequities of courageous activists like Bruno Manser, who worked with indigenous people to try to save the rainforests of Borneo; and the manufacturing of vast markets for nondurable goods—for example, convincing parents in China that disposable diapers made for healthier and smarter babies.

    Dauvergne reveals why a global political economy of ever more—more growth, more sales, more consumption—is swamping environmental gains. Environmentalism of the rich does little to bring about the sweeping institutional change necessary to make progress toward global sustainability.

    • Hardcover $26.95 £21.95
    • Paperback $19.95 £14.99
  • Eco-Business

    Eco-Business

    A Big-Brand Takeover of Sustainability

    Peter Dauvergne and Jane Lister

    Two experts explain the consequences for the planet when corporations use sustainability as a business tool.

    McDonald's promises to use only beef, coffee, fish, chicken, and cooking oil obtained from sustainable sources. Coca-Cola promises to achieve water neutrality. Unilever seeks to achieve 100 percent sustainable agricultural sourcing by 2020. Walmart has pledged to become carbon neutral. Big-brand companies seem to be making commitments that go beyond the usual “greenwashing” efforts undertaken largely for public-relations purposes. In Eco-Business, Peter Dauvergne and Jane Lister examine this new corporate embrace of sustainability, its actual accomplishments, and the consequences for the environment.

    For many leading-brand companies, these corporate sustainability efforts go deep, reorienting central operations and extending through global supply chains. Yet, as Dauvergne and Lister point out, these companies are doing this not for the good of the planet but for their own profits and market share in a volatile, globalized economy. They are using sustainability as a business tool. Dauvergne and Lister show that the eco-efficiencies achieved by big-brand companies limit the potential for finding deeper solutions to pressing environmental problems and reinforce runaway consumption. Eco-business promotes the sustainability of big business, not the sustainability of life on Earth.

    • Hardcover $9.75 £7.99
    • Paperback $19.95 £14.99
  • Paths to a Green World, Second Edition

    Paths to a Green World, Second Edition

    The Political Economy of the Global Environment

    Jennifer Clapp and Peter Dauvergne

    A new edition of a book that takes a comprehensive look at the ways economic processes affect global environmental outcomes.

    This comprehensive and accessible book fills the need for a political economy view of global environmental politics, focusing on the ways international economic processes affect environmental outcomes. It examines the main actors and forces shaping global environmental management, particularly in the developing world. Moving beyond the usual emphasis on international agreements and institutions, it strives to capture not only academic theoretical debates but also views on politics, economics, and the environment within the halls of global conferences, on the streets during antiglobalization protests, and in the boardrooms of international agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and industry associations. The book maps out an original typology of four contrasting worldviews of environmental change—those of market liberals, institutionalists, bioenvironmentalists, and social greens—and uses them as a framework to examine the links between the global political economy and ecological change. This typology provides a common language for students, instructors, and scholars to discuss the issues across the classical social science divisions.The second edition of this popular text has been thoroughly revised and updated to reflect recent events, including the food crisis of 2007-2008, the financial meltdown of 2008, and the Copenhagen Climate Conference of 2009. Topics covered include the environmental implications of globalization; wealth, poverty, and consumption; global trade; transnational corporations; and multilateral and private finance.

    • Paperback $35.00 £27.00
  • The Shadows of Consumption

    The Shadows of Consumption

    Consequences for the Global Environment

    Peter Dauvergne

    An environmentalist maps the hidden costs of overconsumption in a globalized world by tracing the environmental consequences of five commodities.

    The Shadows of Consumption gives a hard-hitting diagnosis: many of the earth's ecosystems and billions of its people are at risk from the consequences of rising consumption. Products ranging from cars to hamburgers offer conveniences and pleasures; but, as Peter Dauvergne makes clear, global political and economic processes displace the real costs of consumer goods into distant ecosystems, communities, and timelines, tipping into crisis people and places without the power to resist. In The Shadows of Consumption, Peter Dauvergne maps the costs of consumption that remain hidden in the shadows cast by globalized corporations, trade, and finance. Dauvergne traces the environmental consequences of five commodities: automobiles, gasoline, refrigerators, beef, and harp seals. In these fascinating histories we learn, for example, that American officials ignored warnings about the dangers of lead in gasoline in the 1920s; why China is now a leading producer of CFC-free refrigerators; and how activists were able to stop Canada's commercial seal hunt in the 1980s (but are unable to do so now). Dauvergne's innovative analysis allows us to see why so many efforts to manage the global environment are failing even as environmentalism is slowly strengthening. He proposes a guiding principle of “balanced consumption” for both consumers and corporations. We know that we can make things better by driving a high-mileage car, eating locally grown food, and buying energy-efficient appliances; but these improvements are incremental, local, and insufficient. More crucial than our individual efforts to reuse and recycle will be reforms in the global political economy to reduce the inequalities of consumption and correct the imbalance between growing economies and environmental sustainability.

    • Hardcover $25.95 £17.95
    • Paperback $24.95 £20.00
  • Paths to a Green World

    Paths to a Green World

    The Political Economy of the Global Environment

    Jennifer Clapp and Peter Dauvergne

    This comprehensive and accessible text fills the need for a political economy view of global environmental politics, focusing on the ways key economic processes affect environmental outcomes. It examines the main actors and forces shaping global environmental management, particularly in the developing world. Moving beyond the usual academic emphasis on international agreements and institutions, it strives to integrate debates within the real world of global policy and the academic world of theory. The book maps out an original typology of four contrasting worldviews of environmental change—those of market liberals, institutionalists, bioenvironmentalists, and social greens—and uses these as a framework to examine the links between the global political economy and ecological change. This typology not only helps students understand and participate in debates about these worldviews but also provides a common language for students and instructors to discuss the issues across the social sciences. The book covers globalization and its consequences for the environment; the evolution of global discourse and global environmental governance; wealth, poverty, and consumption; the impact on the environment of global trade and trade agreements; transnational corporations and differential environmental standards; and the environmental effects of international financing, including multilateral lending and aid and bilateral and private finance. Brief, illustrative case studies appear throughout the text.

    • Hardcover $62.00
    • Paperback $28.00 £19.95
  • Shadows in the Forest

    Shadows in the Forest

    Japan and the Politics of Timber in Southeast Asia

    Peter Dauvergne

    This book is the first to analyze the environmental impact of Japanese trade, corporations, and aid on timber management in the context of Southeast Asian political economies. It is also one of the first comprehensive studies of why Southeast Asian states are unable to enforce forest policies and regulations.

    1998 Winner of the International Studies Association's Harold and Margaret Sprout Award Peter Dauvergne developed the concept of a "shadow ecology" to assess the total environmental impact of one country on resource management in another country or area. Aspects of a shadow ecology include government aid and loans; corporate practices, investment, and technology transfers; and trade factors such as consumption, export and consumer prices, and import tariffs. In Shadows in the Forest, Dauvergne examines Japan's effect on commercial timber management in Indonesia, East Malaysia, and the Philippines. Japan's shadow ecology has stimulated unsustainable logging, which in turn has triggered widespread deforestation. Although Japanese practices have improved somewhat since the early 1990s, corporate trade structures and purchasing patterns, timber prices, wasteful consumption, import tariffs, and the cumulative environmental effects of past practices continue to undermine sustainable forest management in Southeast Asia. This book is the first to analyze the environmental impact of Japanese trade, corporations, and aid on timber management in the context of Southeast Asian political economies. It is also one of the first comprehensive studies of why Southeast Asian states are unable to enforce forest policies and regulations. In particular, it highlights links between state officials and business leaders that reduce state funds, distort policies, and protect illegal and unsustainable loggers. More broadly, the book is one of the first to examine the environmental impact of Northeast Asian development on Southeast Asian resource management and to analyze the indirect environmental impact of bilateral state relations on the management of one Southern resource.

    • Hardcover $70.00
    • Paperback $6.75 £5.95

Contributor

  • New Earth Politics

    New Earth Politics

    Essays from the Anthropocene

    Simon Nicholson and Sikina Jinnah

    Prominent scholars and practitioners consider the role of global environmental politics in the face of increasing environmental stress.

    Humanity's collective impact on the Earth is vast. The rate and scale of human-driven environmental destruction is quickly outstripping our political and social capacities for managing it. We are in effect creating an Earth 2.0 on which the human signature is everywhere, a “new earth” in desperate need of humane and insightful guidance. In this volume, prominent scholars and practitioners in the field of global environmental politics consider the ecological and political realities of life on the new earth, and probe the field's deepest and most enduring questions at a time of increasing environmental stress. Arranged in complementary pairs, the essays in this volume include reflections on environmental pedagogy, analysis of new geopolitical realities, reflections on the power of social movements and international institutions, and calls for more compelling narratives to promote environmental action.

    At the heart of the volume is sustained attention to the role of traditional scholarly activities in a world confronting environmental disaster. Some contributors make the case that it is the scholar's role to provide activists with the necessary knowledge and tools; others argue for more direct engagement and political action. All the contributors confront the overriding question: What is the best use of their individual and combined energies, given the dire environmental reality?

    Contributors Erik Assadourian, Frank Biermann, Wil Burns, Ken Conca, Peter Dauvergne, Daniel Deudney, Navroz Dubash, Richard Falk, Joyeeta Gupta, Maria Ivanova, Peter Jacques, Sikina Jinnah, Karen T. Litfin, Michael F. Maniates, Elizabeth Mendenhall, Simon Nicholson, Kate O'Neill, Judith Shapiro, Paul Wapner, Oran R. Young

    • Hardcover $19.75 £14.99
    • Paperback $35.00 £27.00