Report on commitment and legitimacy of instrument mixing

The ENTRACTE research project is aiming to analyse the European climate policy portfolio with special emphasis on the role of interactions between its different parts. The project’s ultimate goal is to provide pragmatic guidance to policy makers for designing effective, cost efficient and politically and legally feasible climate policy portfolios.

This report shows the results of both theoretical and experimental work on commitment problems, instrument choice, and subsidies that has been done in the context of Legitimacy and Commitment strategies in climate change policy. It is analysed how to enhance cooperation in situations where a trade-off exists between private and public costs and benefits, as is typically the case in climate change policy. The effectiveness and efficiency of policy instruments, interventions, and institutes appear to be sensitive to the details of the decision making situation, like the strategic setting, framing, the instruments used, and the interaction between all these factors. For many instruments there seems to be a trade-off between efficiency and legitimacy – those instruments score high on the one criterion tend to score low on the other, and vice versa.

Authors: Reyer Gerlagh, Eline van der Heijden, Daan van Soest