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Climate change knowledge acquisition in Norway's municipalities

Geir Inge Orderud (Norwegian Institute for Urban and Regional Research (NIBR), Oslo, Norway)

International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management

ISSN: 1756-8692

Article publication date: 8 November 2011




The purpose of this article is to document and analyse the information network available to municipal mayors in Norwegian municipalities and environmental officers in the municipal administration, covering both public and private information sources.


The study is based on a quantitative methodology. Survey data from a sample of all Norwegian municipalities are analysed, and explorative statistics, correlations and regression analysis are applied.


The most important information sources for Norwegian mayors are science, the County governor's environmental department and the municipal environmental officer, with consultancy playing a minor role. In the case of science, it is noticeable that females, central municipalities, and the disciplines of humanities and environment contribute to the strong position of science. Furthermore, the left axis of politics increases the quantity of intra‐municipal information sources. The most important contact points for the environmental officer are the County Governor and other primary municipalities. The county municipality, consultancy and research are of lesser importance. It is noticeable that full‐time environmental officers have a broader climate change information network than part‐time officers. Furthermore, a higher level of education is linked to increased interaction with other public sector actors.

Practical implications

The study documents a multi‐level governance of networking. The differences between full‐time and part‐time environmental officers should stimulate a debate and motivate further research to determine whether funding full‐time positions by the central government could foster more effective local climate change policies.


The study's value lies in its contribution to the climate governance literature, deepening our understanding of the role of different information sources and actors in facilitating sound climate change and environmental policies.



Inge Orderud, G. (2011), "Climate change knowledge acquisition in Norway's municipalities", International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, Vol. 3 No. 4, pp. 416-430.



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Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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