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Is Legal Mobilization for the Birds? Legal Opportunity Structures and Environmental Nongovernmental Organizations in the United Kingdom, France, Finland, Italy

Vanhala, L; (2017) Is Legal Mobilization for the Birds? Legal Opportunity Structures and Environmental Nongovernmental Organizations in the United Kingdom, France, Finland, Italy. Comparative Political Studies (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

What explains the likelihood that an NGO will turn to the courts to pursue their policy goals? This article explores the factors that influence the mobilization of law by environmental NGOs in four Western European countries. It finds that explanations focused on legal opportunity structures are unable to account for the patterns of within-country variation in legal mobilization behaviour. The research also shows that bird protection NGOs as well as home-grown national environmental NGOs are generally more likely to turn to law than transnational environmental groups. While resources and legal opportunities clearly matter to some extent, the author suggests - drawing on sociological institutionalist theory - that explanations of NGO legal mobilization should a) incorporate an understanding of how groups frame and interpret the idea of “the law” and b) explore the role of “strategy entrepreneurs” who promote the use of particular tactics within an organization.

Type: Article
Title: Is Legal Mobilization for the Birds? Legal Opportunity Structures and Environmental Nongovernmental Organizations in the United Kingdom, France, Finland, Italy
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://journals.sagepub.com/home/cps
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Political Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1532117
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