For my interpretivist project, I am proposing to research the process of American policymaking because I want to find out how climate change is represented by American policymakers since the ratification of the UNFCCC in order to help my reader understand the effects of theoretical discussions and scholarship on policy making decisions. I will therefore be researching the discourse on climate change among legislators, executives, and key administrative figures within approximately the last 30 years, with a particular focus on the various ways climate change is framed and how this has shifted.
The first text which composes discourse is Robert Kaplan’s “The Coming Anarchy.” Although not written by a policymaker, this work was read by many of the prominent policymakers in the mid to late 1990s, including Bill Clinton, and had a profound effect on the climate change policy of the Clinton Administration. “The Coming Anarchy” represents the environment as “the national-security issue of the early twenty-first century” because climate change will lead to “surging populations, spreading disease, deforestation and soil erosion, water depletion, air pollution, and, possibly, rising sea levels in critical, overcrowded regions” that furthermore “will prompt mass migrations and, in turn, incite group conflicts.” This is the seminal text which represents climate change as a threat multiplier. Although Kaplan himself is an author, policymakers such as President Clinton, have adopted this representation as their primary understanding of climate change’s connection to policy. This text is therefore deeply connected to much of the discourses on climate change which permeate the late 1990s.
Another text within the discourse on climate change is President Obama’s “Farewell Address to the Nation.” This text also represents climate change as a threat multiplier, describing how future generations will “be busy dealing with its effects: more environmental disasters, more economic disruptions, waves of climate refugees seeking sanctuary.” This shows how the emanating effects of climate change will be what actually manifest as issues, as is central to the threat multiplier framing of climate change. This text is part of a long line which describe climate change as a threat multiplier and is therefore connected to the development of this representation. However, this text comes at a time when climate change denial has become more common, and the incoming president does not represent climate change in the same manner. This text is therefore in conversation with the broader discourse of policymakers around climate change, particularly due to its context as a farewell address.
 Toby Lester. “Beyond ‘The Coming Anarchy,’” The Atlantic, August 1996, <https://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/96aug/proport/kapsid.htm> (Accessed: 9 November 2019).
 Robert Kaplan. “The Coming Anarchy,” The Atlantic, February 1994, <https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1994/02/the-coming-anarchy/304670/> (Accessed: 9 November 2019).
 Barack Obama. “Farewell Address to the Nation From Chicago, Illinois,” Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents, 5.
 Donald J. Trump, “2017 Remarks Announcing United States Withdrawal From the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Paris Agreement,” Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents, 2.
Kaplan, Robert. “The Coming Anarchy,” The Atlantic, February 1994. <https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1994/02/the-coming-anarchy/304670/> (Accessed: 9 November 2019).
Lester, Toby. “Beyond ‘The Coming Anarchy,’” The Atlantic, August 1996. <https://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/96aug/proport/kapsid.htm> (Accessed: 9 November 2019).
Obama, Barack. “Farewell Address to the Nation From Chicago, Illinois,” Daily Compilation of PResidential Documents, 1-9.