Sébastien Jodoin has just authored a new article entitled “Transnational Legal Process and Discourse in Environmental Governance: The Case of REDD+ in Tanzania” in (2019) 44(4) Law & Social Inquiry 1019-1050. The article can be accessed here.
Governments in developing countries have adopted policies, laws, and programs to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+), with the funding and rules provided by global institutions and transnational actors. The transnational legal process for REDD+, entailing the construction and diffusion of legal norms that govern the pursuit of REDD+, has been driven by discursive struggles over the purposes and requirements of REDD+. At the global level, the development of legal norms for REDD+ has been primarily influenced by coalitions committed to the discourses of ecological modernization, civic environmentalism, and to a lesser extent, climate justice. Through discourse analysis of the transnational legal process for REDD+ in Tanzania, I show how domestic efforts to operationalize REDD+ have been dominated by a government coalition that has emphasized green governmentality, made few concessions to the discourse of civic environmentalism, and completely neglected the climate justice claims of Indigenous Peoples. This case study reveals how discourse analysis may enhance the study of transnational legal phenomena by drawing attention to the complex interplay of global and domestic discourses and its role in shaping legal norms and reinforcing or challenging structures of power and knowledge within and across legal systems.