A Review of the Environmental Policy Literature from 2014 to 2017 with a Closer Look at the Energy Justice Field

Michelle Graff, Sanya Carley, and Maureen Pirog



This review article documents and analyzes trends within the environmental policy literature published between 2014 and 2017. We find that environmental policy scholarship has recently shifted its focus from more traditional topics, such as watershed and ecosystem management, to other modern issues, such as climate change and energy. The environmental policy literature has increased in complexity and become more interdisciplinary in nature, which we illustrate with a discussion of the energy justice literature. The methodological approaches used by environmental policy scholars have also become increasingly diverse, with a notable uptick in statistical and modeling approaches. We find that some topics, such as policy failure, gender issues, and energy welfare policies are under-explored, and certain regions within the world, such as developing countries, are less frequently studied. We encourage scholars to consider these gaps in the literature when developing future research.

KEY WORDS: environmental policy, energy justice, energy policy, climate change