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A Model United Nations experiment on climate change negotiations

Last registered on October 11, 2019

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
A Model United Nations experiment on climate change negotiations
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0004834
Initial registration date
October 09, 2019

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
October 11, 2019, 11:34 AM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.

Locations

Region
Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
University of Munich

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
University of Bern
PI Affiliation
University of Jena

Additional Trial Information

Status
On going
Start date
2018-11-01
End date
2020-07-01
Secondary IDs
Abstract
We use Model United Nations simulations of the Conference of the Parties to study climate change negotiations under two different negotiation protocols. One protocol is similar to the Paris negotiations: Countries have to agree on a non-binding resolution on the reduction of world-wide CO2 emissions, and each country has to decide on a nationally determined voluntary contribution, i.e. a commitment by how much to reduce its own emissions. The second protocol focuses on a uniform carbon price. Countries have to agree to a minimum carbon price that applies to all countries signing the resolution. Schmidt and Ockenfels (2019) have shown in an abstract laboratory experiment that negotiations on a uniform minimum price for carbon achieve substantially higher reductions of CO2 emissions than Paris style negotiations. Our study builds upon this laboratory experiments and extends its scope methodologically and contextually. We conduct a field experiment, using for the first time a Model United Nations simulation of the Conference of the Parties to explore (with increased external validity) the effect of two negotiation mechanism on the CO2 emissions reduction. We randomly assign delegates to two treatments (1) Paris, (2) Uniform Global Carbon Price and measure the CO2 emissions reductions goals worldwide and at the national level. The experiment is designed such that the two treatments differ only in the negotiation protocol.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Hofmann, Elisa, Lucas Kyriacou and Klaus Schmidt. 2019. "A Model United Nations experiment on climate change negotiations." AEA RCT Registry. October 11. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.4834-1.0
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
We organize one-day Model United Nations conferences as Conferences of the Parties (COP) in order to investigate whether the negotiation environment influences the CO2 emissions reduction.

Data in three pilot studies have already been collected in 2018 and 2019 (Bern, Munich, Zurich).
Intervention Start Date
2019-10-12
Intervention End Date
2020-07-01

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Our main dependent variable are the CO2 emissions reduction on both, a worldwide and a countrywide level and the voting decisions in favor / against the Resolution.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We implement two treatments in a between-subjects design: 1) Paris, 2) Uniform Global Carbon Price.
We randomly assign the subjects to the two treatments and the country they represent. Ten countries/regions participate in the respective MUN conference: Australia, Canada, China, European Union, India, Japan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, USA.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
Eight groups of 10 participants each at four different locations. At each location one group negotiates according to the rules of the Paris agreement, one group negotiates a carbon price.
Sample size: planned number of observations
Eight groups at four different locations. At each location one group negotiates according to the rules of the Paris agreement, one group negotiates a carbon price.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Eight groups at four different locations. At each location one group negotiates according to the rules of the Paris agreement, one group negotiates a carbon price.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
Supporting Documents and Materials

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IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Ethikkommission der Volkswirtschaftlichen Fakult├Ąt der LMU Munich
IRB Approval Date
2019-05-08
IRB Approval Number
N/A
Analysis Plan

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Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?
No

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials