Environmental Organizations and Climate Change Policy Capacity: An Assessment of the Canadian Case

Michael P. Howlett, Samuel Oliphant


The term ‘policy analytical capacity’ is used within the policy analysis literature to describe the ability of organizations to produce valuable research and analysis on topics of their choosing. As the scientific evidence becomes more clear, and various actors in society continue to point out that governments around the world will need to play a lead role in climate change mitigation and adaptation, there is good reason to believe that environmental policy makers and civil society stakeholders are going to require a high level of policy analytical capacity in order to create effective policies. This article examines the existing analytical capacity of three representative examples of Canada’s most important environmental policy research organizations - two governmental organizations and one NGO - in order to provide information about the status of each organizations’ research capacity and the effect this has on overall government policy-making capability in the face of climate change challenges.


policy capacity; environment; Canada

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@Canadian Political Science Review (CPSR). ISSN 1911-4125