Events & Media

The Bren School of Environmental Science & Management
at the University of California, Santa Barbara



"Environmental Free Riding in the United States"

Neal D. Woods
Associate Professor
Department of Political Science
University of South Carolina

Monday, May 21, 2012
11:30 - 12:30
Bren Hall Dean's Conference Room

"Neal's work on environmental regulation makes for a fascinating addition to our series on environmental institutions. He uses state data to uncover the ways that governments free ride in their enforcement of pollution regulations. This research talk will be followed by an informal lunch to allow us to continue our conversation with Neal." — Sarah Anderson, Host

Political jurisdictions have incentives to promote pollution spillovers in order to capture the benefits of economic production within their borders while exporting the environmental costs to their neighbors.  Drawing on data from state enforcement of the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act, I discuss the extent to which U.S. states engage in this environmental free riding behavior.

Neal Woods’s research focuses on bureaucracy, regulation, and environmental policy. He has published numerous articles on these and related topics in political science, public policy, and public administration journals. Much of his current research focuses on issues related to environmental federalism, including environmental free riding and strategic interaction among the American states.  Professor Woods received his PhD from the University of Kentucky in 2003. His dissertation, Rethinking Regulation: Institutions and Interests in State Regulatory Enforcement. was awarded the Leonard D. White Award for Best Dissertation in Public Administration from the American Political Science Association. 

NOTE: Research colloquia are hosted by Bren faculty members and are generally high-level talks about research in a particular area of environmental science and management.


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