The Microfoundations of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change
Abstract: Recognizing that climate change represents an urgent and potentially irreversible threat to human societies and the planet, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) parties adopted an agreement at their 21st meeting in Paris in December 2015. A total of 10,000 delegates from 195 countries, plus the EU, declared their ambition to hold global temperature rises well below 2 °C above those of pre-industrial times, pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C, and make the global economy carbon neutral in the second half of the 21st century. At a macro-level, it appears that the scientific, business, and political communities have reached an organizational and collective outcome aimed at reducing CO2 emissions to a sustainable level. This macro-level outcome is an extraordinary achievement that, nonetheless, obscures a long and agonizing micro-foundational journey, which involved several setbacks, resilience, and innumerable interactions. The aim of this study is to look at the Paris Agreement on climate change and illuminate the multifaceted behavioural, relational, and organizational micro-foundations that were conducive to its achievement. The study examines the Paris Agreement on climate change in its real-life context to identify the behavioural, relational, and organizational micro-foundations that were conducive to this outcome.