Innovations in Policy Making: Applying Reversibility and Polycentric Governance in the India-UK Cooperation for Environmental Development

Lead Research Organisation: Newcastle University
Department Name: Sch of Architect, Planning & Landscape


Global Economic Growth in the past half century has come at irreversible costs to the environment. The proposed project seeks to understand the challenge that policy makers face to avoid irreversible consequences in resource development and environmental degradation, while building evolutionary resilience capacities. The study attempts to explore the applicability of the concept of reversibility in combination with the concept of evolutionary resilience and in particular with its aspect of polycentric governance to develop normative policy analysis and responsible policy making tools. Empirically, the study will explore three key initiatives of the India-UK cooperation for Environmental Development (the "India-UK Roadmap for 2030"): Urban Development, Sustainable Finance, Solar Energy. This study proposes that reversibility should guide policy making processes and be institutionalised through a model of polycentric governance. The key research questions are: 1) What is the process through which the initiatives of Urban Development, Sustainable Finance, Solar Energy have emerged and developed within the India-UK Roadmap for 2030? 2) What role is played, if any, by the
discourses of reversibility and evolutionary resilience in the above three initiatives? 3) What model of governance institutions would be best suited to the adoption of reversibility and evolutionary resilience? Is polycentric governance the mechanism by which reversibility and evolutionary resilience can be institutionalised? The study will utilise three methodological approaches: (a) document analysis (b) the genealogical study of the emergence and development of the thematic divisions of urban development, sustainable finance, and solar energy and (c) interviews with the key actors involved in those initiatives.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ES/P000762/1 30/09/2017 29/09/2027
2717095 Studentship ES/P000762/1 30/09/2022 29/09/2026 Divyali Mehrotra