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Olha Hnatyshyn

PhD Student

Junior Associate

Loyola Sustainability Research Centre

Olha Hnatyshyn is pursuing a Doctorate of Philosophy Degree in Environmental Economics with a focus on the effectiveness of international environmental agreements on climate change and environmental policies.
Climate change has emerged as one of the world's most pressing concerns nowadays. It can only be addressed effectively through international cooperation. That has led to the signature of numerous international environmental agreements such as the Montréal Protocol (1987), the Kyoto Protocol (1997), the Paris Agreement (2015). The importance of environmental agreements is indisputable since they initiate actions and coordinate the efforts among its members and most importantly, agreements reflect key government policies that tackle climate change and build resilient economy. Due to the lack of a supranational authority that could enforce countries to cooperate, international environmental agreements are designed to be voluntary or self-enforcing. In other words, it has to be in the self-interest of a country to join the agreement, and complying with emission targets has to be profitable for all members. Free-ride incentives of members and the complexity of the agreements themselves are the key features of large international environmental agreements on climate change.
That is why, in the last decade, multiple international environmental agreements (MIEAs) emerged as an alternative approach to tackle climate change. Among the well-known MIEAs are the Arctic Council Framework for Action on Enhanced Black Carbon and Methane Emissions Reductions (2015); the North American Environmental Cooperation Agreement (2020); the EU’s 8th Environment Action Programme to 2030 (2020).
The principal objectives of the research are to develop a conceptual model and to examine stability of MIEAs, within a class of a non-cooperative coalition formation game with negative externalities in a partition function form, applying the principles of cost-benefit analysis with quadratic benefits and environmental damage functions. It is assumed that all countries sign agreements, hence multiple coalitions emerge. The framework allows to examine the impact of externalities across multiple coalitions on the formation of stable agreements, thus the stability of the coalition structures. It is defined to be stable when there is no incentive for a member of any coalition in the partition to free ride on the cooperation of the remaining signatories, and no more countries wish to join any coalition in the partition. Multiple coalition formation game leads to better results in emissions reduction and greater benefits from cooperation.
Olha has also been awarded the Sustainability Champion Award for her involvement in the Zero-waste initiative in the Department of Economics at Concordia University. She has also received certificate of achievement for completing the World Climate Negotiations Training organized by Climatable. She was Sustainability Ambassador and Team Leader at Concordia University, volunteers with Climate Reality Project Canada, and has initiated and co-organized together with Alexander Pace and Étienne Guertin the Interdisciplinary PhD Student Symposium on Climate Change that connects distinguished speakers, scientists, and students across Canada and it is filled with panel discussions, interactive sessions and workshops that provides an excellent opportunity to learn more about the on-going research on climate change across disciplines.

Olha is pursuing her research in the Department of Economics at Concordia University under the supervision of Dr. Effrosyni Diamantoudi. ​

The title of Olha's thesis is Multiple International Environmental Agreements: an alternative approach to tackle climate change.

Contact Olha at

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