BASEES Annual Conference 2022

Institutional arrangements and policymaking in transition states: comparing environmental governance in Georgia & Armenia

Fri8  Apr02:40pm(20 mins)
CWB Plenary


Ellie Martus


While much attention has been paid to the experience of Western liberal democracies, our understanding of environmental governance in transition states is limited. This paper examines how institutional arrangements shape environmental policymaking, comparing the experiences of two post-Soviet states, Georgia and Armenia. The paper explores formal governance arrangements for the environment in these states, how these have changed over time, and the consequences of these arrangements for the policymaking process. Ultimately, the paper seeks to comment on how these arrangements influence a state’s capacity to address its environmental concerns. Drawing on a series of interviews with NGOs, international organisations, policymakers, and industry, the evidence suggests that ministerial arrangements shape environmental policy in these states in a number of key ways, including how issues are framed, the way in which conflicts are aired, the level of policy activity, and interaction with other actors. Institutional instability was found to be a major factor undermining environmental capacity.