The global institutional frameworks and the diffusion of renewable energy technologies in the BRICS countries

Isabel Bodas Freitas, Eva Dantas & Michiko Iizuka


This paper examines the role of the global institutional frameworks on the national processes of innovation diffusion. we focus on the influence of the Kyoto mechanisms on the diffusion of renewable energy technologies in the BRICS countries i.e. Brazil, China India, Russia and South Africa. Our preliminary analysis suggests that the Kyoto Mechanisms may support the diffusion of some simple, low cost and mature technologies which are already diffused in the host countries, rather than the diffusion of new renewable energy technologies. This observation raises questions about the extent to which the Kyoto Mechanisms at its present state create major incentives for the diffusion of new renewable energy technologies in the BRICS, in the absence of a indigenous technological efforts and capabilities in new renewable technologies and national policy initiatives to attract and leverage the implementation of Kyoto Mechanism projects to support technology diffusion. We analyse these issues theoretically as well as empirically making use of national aggregated data from the World Development Indicators, the International Energy Agency, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and secondary sources.

JEL: O33, O19 , O13

Keywords: technology diffusion; renewable energy; global institutions; BRICS, Kyoto mechanisms

UNU-MERIT Working Papers ISSN 1871-9872

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