|Assessing the effectiveness of International Environmental Agreements (IEAs). Demystifying the issue of data unavailability|Seelarbokus, C.B. (2014). Assessing the effectiveness of International Environmental Agreements (IEAs). Demystifying the issue of data unavailability. SAGE Open 4(1): 1-18. hdl.handle.net/10.1177/2158244014521820
In: SAGE Open. SAGE Publications: London. ISSN 2158-2440, more
effectiveness, international environmental agreements, environmental treaties, assessment, data availability
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It is commonly claimed that assessing the effectiveness of International Environmental Agreements (IEAs) from the environmental problem-solving perspective is challenging because environmental data are not available. However, not much research has been done on the characterization of the nature and causes of such data unavailability. This article analyzes the term “data unavailability” and provides three typologies for data unavailability: (a) “true unavailability,” where data collection complexities and resource constraints limit data collection and analysis; (b) “false unavailability,” which refers to the existence of relevant data, but failure to report due to various causes; and (c) “external availability,” which refers to the existence of relevant data in several organizations and research institutions, but with no established networks for data sharing between such institutions and the IEA institutions. This article discusses the causes for the various types of data unavailability and makes recommendations for promoting data availability.