GO 231 Spring 2014 Midterm


The midterm, like Gaul, will be divided into three parts.

I. Short answer questions drawn from readings and lectures.  The list of key concepts and questions below should be helpful
II.  ONE question from Agenda Setting Section
III. TWO questions from Institutions Section. 

You may bring in a one sided study sheet, typed or untyped, font and format of your own choosing. 

Some advice for essay questions
1. I do not like reading poorly structured and argued essays. I give you the questions in advance so that you can prepare a coherent and detailed argument in response to each question. Outline your answers in advance.
2. Use the readings and authors' names in your answer. (e.g. Stone contends causal stories are …)
3. Use specific examples to support your arguments. The ID terms are a very good place to start. They are the building blocks for the essays.
4. You will be hard pressed to complete your answers during the allotted time period. Your answers should be concise and avoid unnecessary words and fluff. You may also abbreviate. Pay attention to the time allotted per section.

You essay answers will be evaluated based upon
1. the clarity of your argument
2. the use of the readings and lectures
3. the creative use of examples from lectures and readings to make your arguments
4. the clarity of concept definitions.

I. Short Answer Questions These will be drawn from the readings and lectures.

Answer 4 out of 6, 3 minutes each.

II. Agenda Setting I will choose ONE
1. Please explain why and how the nation tackled air pollution in the 1970s first using Kingdon’s model of agenda setting and next, Down’s issue attention cycle.  Make sure to identify the key elements of each author’s theory and then apply them to the case.  Which theory does a better job of explaining and why?
2. What are the key lessons of Deborah Stone’s theory about causal stories for environmental policy entrepreneurs (EPE) about how to strategically frame issues?  Compare the issue framing of an environmental group (Sierra Club’s “False Advertising”  or Pralle’s Agenda Setting) with a more pro-business group (Patrick J. Michaels’ “Losing It” , Coal, or Climategate).  How do the authors use images and words to frame the issue? Why does each group frame the issue in that way?  Which framing more effective and why?

III. Institutions I will choose TWO
1. Your friends in the Environmental Action Club (EAC) cannot understand why the American political system is not taking more aggressive steps to combat global warming.  Please write an essay for them explaining why we have gridlock and why major policy reforms are difficult to enact.

2. In a 7,000 word essay in Rolling Stone, Al Gore blasted Barack Obama’s record on global warming.  Gore says Obama has failed to stand up for "bold action" on global warming, meaning make global warming a priority for the American public and pass climate legislation.  Please write President Obama’s reply.  Make sure you provide an analysis of what he has and has not done in the context of the larger political and economic environment as well as put his actions in a comparative context of other presidents’ abilities to pursue their environmental agenda

3. Identify and analyze what you believe are the FOUR most important lessons a future environmental policy entrepreneur (EPE) should learn about how Congress makes environmental policy from Congress’s deliberations over the Senate debate over cap and trade?

4. Are the states an important source of environmental policy innovation in America? In your answer, please discuss what states are doing to reduce their carbon emissons, why they are doing it or not, and what are the implications for a national climate policy?

Below is a list of important concepts and questions drawn from the readings and lectures. They are useful in culling the important ideas from the readings and lecture notes for the Midterm.

Lessons of Easter Island

Downs, Anthony, Up and Down with Ecologythe issue attention cycle
dynamics of "Issue-Attention Cycle", why do issues rise and fall according to Downs?� What are the strengths and limits of Downs� theory, the relationship between objective conditions of the problem and its importance on the public agenda
Layzer, The Nation Tackles Pollution, in The Environmental Case p. 25-51
Why did the nation �tackle� pollution in the early 1970s? How well does Layzer�s account exemplify� Kingdon�s model of agenda setting?� Down�s issue attention cycle?
focusing event, salience, redefinition of the pollution problem, Nixon�s motivations, Muskie's motivations , The science and economic analysis behind the clean air and clean water act, Agency capture, Policy window, Scope of conflict, Conditions versus problems, Political entrepreneur
Sarah Pralle, Agenda-setting and climate change
What specific strategies should the environmental movement should use to keep the issue of climate change on the decision agendas of governments?� What are some of the limits or challenges to her strategy?
problem stream, policy stream, Criteria for Survivability within the policy community, political feasibility, policy window, policy entrepreneurs, key problem indicators, scientific consensus,
What do the public opinion polls on global warming suggest about
 Deborah Stone Causal Stories and Policy Agendas
Why are causal stories important in defining problems?� Why is defining the problem so important?  What are the key characteristics of different types of causal stories? What are the strategic advantages and disadvantages of each type of causal story for advocating for a policy?  How should environmentalists frame their causal stories? How should polluters frame their causal stories?
What are some of the limits on Environmentalists' ability to frame issues in ways favorable to their cause (think discussion of Sierra Club framing of miles per gallon)?� Compare the issue framing of Sierra Club's False Advertising with Patrick J. Michaels Losing It using Stone's analytical framework. How do the authors frame the issue and why do they adopt that frame? Which is more effective and why?

 Ingram, Helen and Leah Fraser, Path Dependency and Adroit Innovation
Why did California change its water policy? What does the California water policy case reveal about theories about how environmental policies change? About the strategies for policies entrepreneurs?
Punctuated equilibrium theories and policy change, path dependence, high exit costs, policy image, institutionalization, professionalization, benefits and risk spreading, new policy image or frames, new management practices, venue shifting, skilled implementation, positive feedbacks for change, role of networks, adept policy design, gestation periods and cascades, environmental water account, adaptive management , Bruce Babbitt; CALFED
What are the three key lessons environmental policy entrepreneurs (EPEs) learn from the California water policy case about how to achieve dramatic changes?

McGrory Klyza and Sousa, Creating the Current Institutional Landscape of Environmental Policy-Making, Eugene B. Skolnikoff; The Policy Gridlock On Global Warming
political explanations for gridlock- Checks and balances, Declining liberalism, polarization, ideological and partisan divergence, low salience of environmental issues, lack of public consensus, influence of organized issues
Scientific explanations for gridlock - scientific uncertainties, interaction of ecological and economic factors, time horizons, global nature of crisis, scope of problem

the green state as a labyrinth

Presidential powers, policy goals, environmental strategy, presidential tools, constraints, Bush Presidency- New Source Review, ESA, "rewriting the rules"; Obama�s Environmental Record- appointments, American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, administrative actions, What should Presidents expect from Congress as they tries to advance their environmental policies?  President Obama wants your advice on the how they can most effectively achieve his environmental policy goals. Be very specific in identifying the key dos and don'ts from previous presidents. President's alternative pathways- Rulemaking, implementation, appointments, executive orders, Antiquities Act,
Obama's use of alternative pathways, examples of and political and environmental assessment of Obama's use of alternative pathways

Key institutional features of congress, Fragmentation, Electoral cycle, Localism,
As the World Burns- know the senators, interest groups, nature of deal making, competing interests, attentive vs inattentive interests, transparency, magnitude and timing of costs and benefits, coalition leaders, side payments. In considering climate change legislation in the Senate, explain the impact of attentive vs. inattentive publics; the positive and negative impacts of the electoral incentive, the role of the President, and the role of bargaining.,  grand bargain strategy, Republican primaries, positive and negative impact of local electoral connections, Lizza vs Weiss critique of failure of climate bill, Is it possible or desirable to get a "clean" cap and trade bill without weakening amendments? Congressional budget riders as alternative pathways (wolf)

Standing and the Citizen Suits, Ripeness and Standard of Review, Standard of Review, Endangered Species Act definition of takings, Regulatory takings, Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. EPA- standing, ripeness, defining ambiguous legislation, and standard of review; Center for Biological Diversity and pygmy owl,

Should environmentalists continue to look to the courts to defend their policies? What are the advantages and disadvantages of this strategy?   What does the recent Supreme Court decision in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. EPA reveal about standing, ripeness, defining ambiguous legislation, and standard of review and the role of the judiciary in making environmental policy? Is the CBD endangered species' judicial strategy a politically or environmental sustainable strategy? Why or why not?

Are states the new heroes of environmental policy innovation? Sources of state innovation, Example of state innovation and environmental policy tools, co-benefits of state climate policy and examples of cobenefits, limits of state environmental innovation, dependency on federal government,  Rabe's sources of high emission versus low emissions states, high versus low policy innovation states, lessons of state Renewable Portfolio Standards,