Faculty Author Type

Current Faculty [Karin Mickelson]

Published In

Yearbook of International Environmental Law

Document Type


Publication Date



International environmental law; North-south relations; Common but differentiated responsibilities


The author argues that international environmental law as a discipline has failed to respond to Third World concerns in a meaningful fashion. It has merely accommodated these concerns at the margins, as opposed to integrating them into the core of the discipline and its self-understanding. Two aspects of the standard, "accommodationist," approach are considered: (1) the tendency to provide an ahistorical account of the evolution of international environmental law; (2) the implicit or explicit portrayal of the South as a grudging participant in environmental regimes rather than being recognized as an active partner in an ongoing effort to identify the fundamental nature of environmental problems and the appropriate responses thereto. The author explores the ramifications of the standard approach in the context of an examination of the principle of, "common but differentiated responsibilities." She concludes by pleading in favour of an, "integrationist," approach, that brings the concerns of the South into the mainstream of the discipline.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.