Arguments about the “positive” influence of growing transnational linkages have typically focused on their role in diffusing environmentally superior innovations which help to raise countries’ environment-efficiency. The present article empirically tests these claims by examining whether developing countries’ linkages with more CO2- and SO2-efficient economies contribute to domestic improvements in CO2- and SO2-efficiency. Our large-N, statistical findings caution against some of the efficiency-oriented optimism voiced by supporters of globalization. Although imports ties with more pollution-efficient countries are found to spillover into improved domestic CO2- and SO2-efficiency, neither transnational linkages via exports, inward foreign direct investment (FDI) nor telephone calls appear to have any influence on domestic pollution-efficiency
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