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WWS-Andlinger Energy Seminar Series: Bard Harstad, Northwestern University

Date: April 23, 2013

Time: 12:15 pm -

Location: Bowl 16, Robertson Hall

Prof. Bard Harstad, of Northwestern University, will give a talk entitled “The Dynamics of Climate Agreements” as part of the WWS-Andlinger Energy Seminar Series.

This paper analyzes a framework in which countries over time pollute and contract with firms that invest in green technologies. Without a climate treaty, the countries pollute too much and invest too little, partly to induce the others to pollute less and invest more in the future. Nevertheless, short-term agreements on emission levels may reduce every country’s  payoff, since countries invest less when they anticipate future negotiations.  If intellectual property rights are weak, then the agreement should be tougher and more long-term.  If the climate agreement happens to be short-term or absent, intellectual property rights should be strengthened, tariffs should decrease, and investments should be subsidized. Thus, subsidizing or liberalizing technological trade is a strategic substitute for tougher climate treaties.

Bård Harstad joined Managerial Economics and Decision Sciences in 2004. His academic interests include political economics, public economics and organizational economics. In particular, his research focuses on international institutions, negotiations and agreements; currently he is analyzing international climate change agreements. Parts of this research have published in journals like the American Political Science Review, American Economic Review, and Quarterly Journal of Economics.  Before coming to Kellogg, Harstad completed his PhD in Economics at Stockholm University and a Cand. Oecon degree from the University of Oslo, in his native Norway. For shorter periods, he has also worked in the World Bank, the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs and as a freelance journalist.