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In this frame, it could even be suggested—some developed country scientists have in fact voiced this view—that a concern for justice (for example, regarding an equitable North-South representation) could undermine the goal of producing robust IPCC science. There are at least four grounds to demonstrate that a concern for procedural justice in the IPCC is not only valid but in fact urgently warranted.First, as already indicated, it is now abundantly evident from existing literature that while the IPCC reports are not governance instruments in themselves, per se, they have significant ability to influence climate policy in justice-enhancing or constraining ways (Corbera et al.
Rather, it has been shown that in functioning simultaneously as a scientific and an intergovernmental body, the IPCC is a boundary or hybrid organization whose constructions of climate change are shaped by both scientific and political interests (Beck ).
It is the abiding presence of these political interests and calculus that raises the stake for procedural justice.
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This article provides an analysis of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) focusing on procedural justice.
Third, scholarship has shown that beyond being a boundary organization, the IPCC process is deeply sociological and deliberative (Beck ).
Accordingly, it incorporates all the “messiness” and relational aspects of politics, power, authority and knowledge construction that characterize normal social interactions.In recognition of its unique position, the IPCC goes to considerable length to ensure the transparency of its process.The IPCC generally avoids the language of justice and fairness but rather prefers to justify its rules of procedural as well as the drive to increase the participation of authors from developing countries in terms of bolstering its credibility and legitimacy. () among others have all noted, the legitimacy of, and trust in, institutions are both strongly linked to perceptions of procedural fairness.) suggests that IPCC reports affect national policy, constructions of climate equity and donor-driven research in India.Occupying its commanding position as the world’s most authoritative voice on climate science, the IPCC has important “symbolic power” (Hughes ) and far-reaching influence in shaping the tenor, urgency and political decisions of climate change.As the sixth IPCC assessment cycle gets underway, it is vital to continue to explore how best to analyse and strengthen procedural fairness in the IPCC with a view to enhancing the organization’s ability to meet its objectives of producing sound, balanced and comprehensive reports that can drive effective and equitable global response to climate change. In the next section, I review the basis for possible sentiment against procedural justice in the IPCC and I demonstrate how, to what end, and with what effects questions of fairness and procedural justice matter in the IPCC work.In Section , I combine scholarship from psychology, conflict management and legal procedures with IPCC literature, to develop a six-component framework for assessing and improving procedural justice in the IPCC.Critical IPCC scholarship from science and technology studies (STS), political science, geography and sociology highlight among other issues, geographical imbalance of authors in favour of developed countries (Bjurström and Polk ).These issues and several of the above-cited literature raise salient questions about the procedural fairness of the IPCC process, especially in the context of North-South climate justice.Access to society journal content varies across our titles.If you have access to a journal via a society or association membership, please browse to your society journal, select an article to view, and follow the instructions in this box.