Master’s Thesis
The Dynamics of a Green Transition
An Agent-Based Analysis


The climate is changing, but the world's states have not (yet) managed to reach an effective agreement on reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. What is needed is a green transition from the ‘logic of consequences’, the standard model of rational economic actors, to the ‘logic of appropriateness’. In this thesis, I identify the conditions under which an international transition towards the logic of appropriateness might occur in the field of climate change. To address this question, I develop an agent-based model that enables the dynamics of a green transition to be simulated computationally.

My findings suggest that the possibility of distinguishing emitters from non-emitters increases the probability of a green transition, and that explicit pressure on those that do not punish others' climate-harming behaviour is even more important. The simulation results also offer some insights concerning which individuals and states should be encouraged to compare themselves when assessing the appropriateness of their climate-harming behaviour. Finally, I consider the presence and absence of these mechanisms in the 2015 Paris Agreement, and offer some recommendations on how the most important mechanisms not embedded in the agreement could be implemented.

* NetLogo is required to run the model