Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Spring 2021

Department 1

Political Science


This paper examines the effectiveness of contractual, facilitative, and hybrid legal models in international climate agreements from the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (1992) to the Paris Climate Agreement (2015). It begins with a review of the balance between hard and soft treaty law in international environmental treaties prior to the Paris Climate Agreement with an eye for how this translated into effectiveness in terms of compelling states to lower greenhouse gas emissions. It then investigates the structure and effectiveness of the Paris Climate Agreement, taking into account global political realities and limitations for international environmental law. The product of this investigation is an argument in favor of Paris’s hybrid model utilizing both soft and hard treaty law in order to prioritize participation while maintaining an enforcement regime and state-level emissions-reduction obligations.


Written for POL 303: Topics in International Politics

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License