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Greening the Car Industry

Varieties of Capitalism and Climate Change
John Mikler, Lecturer in Government and International Relations, University of Sydney, Australia
This ground-breaking book will be of great benefit to students and academics, particularly those with an interest in comparative politics, public policy and international political economy. It may also serve as a resource for courses on environmental politics and environmental management as well as aspects of international relations and business/management. Given the book’s contemporary policy relevance, it will be a valuable reference for policy practitioners with an interest in industry policy, multinational corporations, the environment, and institutional approaches to comparative politics.
Extent: 296 pp
Hardback Price: £94.00 Online: £84.60
Publication Date: 2009
ISBN: 978 1 84720 652 7
Availability: In Stock
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  • Environment
  • Climate Change
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • European Politics and Policy
  • Regulation and Governance
Corporations, including those in the car industry, are increasingly keen to proclaim their green credentials. But what motivates firms to reduce the environmental impact of their products? Rather than accepting the conventional wisdom, John Mikler addresses this question in a novel way by taking a comparative institutionalist approach informed by the Varieties of Capitalism literature.

Focusing on Germany, the US and Japan, the author shows that national variations in capitalist relations of production are central to explaining how the car industry tackles the issue of climate change, such variations are crucial for understanding the normative as well as material basis for firms’ motivations.

This ground-breaking book will be of great benefit to students and academics, particularly those with an interest in comparative politics, public policy and international political economy. It may also serve as a resource for courses on environmental politics and environmental management as well as aspects of international relations and business/management. Given the book’s contemporary policy relevance, it will be a valuable reference for policy practitioners with an interest in industry policy, multinational corporations, the environment, and institutional approaches to comparative politics.
‘This carefully crafted and meticulously documented empirical study, drawing on statistics, the analysis of corporate environmental reports and expert interviews, makes a compelling argument for the important role of varieties of capitalism in motivating car manufacturers’ environmental activities. . . Greening the Car Industry is a valuable contribution to academic literature on the role of private actors in global environmental governance and on the drivers of environmental protection activities by corporations. It is not only of interest to scholars dealing with the car industry but also to everyone intrigued by the conundrum of why some globally competing private actors are more protective of the environment than others.’
– Katja Biedenkopf, Global Environmental Politics

‘. . . fascinating and stimulating book, which is both comprehensive and partial in equal degree.’
– Peter Wells, Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning

‘Greening the Car Industry is an innovative book in the Varieties of Capitalism tradition. Its interviews and analysis offer rich insights into why the US car industry struggles, particularly on environmental impact, compared to Japanese and German firms. John Mikler shows that regulatory institutions matter, and how they matter. For the car industry at least, more collaborative forms of capitalism show more promise. Mikler gives us a masterpiece of regulatory scholarship.’
– John Braithwaite, The Australian National University
Contents: Preface 1. Introduction 2. The Varieties of Capitalism Approach 3. The Car Industry and Climate Change 4. How Rules are Made: State Regulations in the European Union, US and Japan 5. Society as Governance? Social Attitudes and Consumer Demand 6. Firms’ Rationales: Environmental Reporting 7. Firms’ Commitment: Interviews 8. Conclusion Appendices Bibliography Index