Governance - Chapter 01

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Political Science
Waldemar Skrobacki

Shirley Hoang Governance – A very short introduction Mark Bevir Chapter 01 What is governance? - Governance refers to all processes of governing, whether undertaken by a government, market, or network, whether over a family, tribe, formal or informal organization, or territory, and whether through laws, norms, power, or language - Governance differs from government n that it focuses less on the state and its institutions and more on social practices and activities - To understand governance requires that we look at abstract theories of hierarchy, market, and network as types of organizations, and then at more concrete debates about the shift from hierarchy to markets and networks in corporations, the public sector, and global politics Governance and government - Governance differs from government both theoretically and empirically Theoretically Governance - Governance is the process of governing o It is what governments do to their citizens o It is also what corporations and other organizations do to their employees and members - Refers to processes of rules wherever they occur - The process of governing need not to be consciously undertaken by a hierarchy organize set of actors - Markets and networks of actors can govern, produce coordination, and make decisions VS. Government - Refers to political institutions Empirical Governance - Refers to a shift in public organization since the 1980s - Increasingly governments rely on private and voluntary sector actors to manage and deliver services - The state enters contracts with other organizations o I.e. to manage prisons and to provide training to unemployed - The state forms partnerships with other organizations o I.e. to build roads and rail lines and to deliver humanitarian aid Government - Consisted in no small measure or bureaucratic hierarchies - The new governance gives greater scope to marks and networks - Governance has abstract theoretical and concrete empirical uses o Governance refers to all processes of social organization and social coordination - Governance differs from government because social organization need not involve oversight and control, let alone the state - Markets and networks might provide governance in the absence of any significant government - The more concrete empirical uses of governance refer to changing organizational practices within corporations, the public sector, and the global order - There is a widespread view that the processes of governing now involve more diverse actors and more diverse organizational forms - Good governance is: o I.e. a mantra in current discussions of aid and development, although what counts as good governance is still a matter of contentious debate - The theories, practices, and problems of governance come together in concrete activity o Theories inspire people to act in ways that give rise to new practices and problems o Practices create problems and encourage attempts to comprehend them I theoretical terms o Problems require theoretical reflection and practical activity if they are to be adequately addressed - Theories of governance typically open up the black-box of the state o They draw attention to the processes and interactions through which highly diverse social interests and actors produce the policies, practices, and effects of governing  In addition, the relationship of state and society changed significantly in the late twentieth century - New practices of governance find political actors increasingly constrained by mobilized and organized elements in society - States and international organizations increasingly share the activity of governing with social actors, including private firms, nongovernmental organizations, and non-profit service providers - The new relationship between state and society admits of considerable variation, but it is an international phenomenon - The new practices of governance extend across the developed and developing world, and they are also prominent among strategies to regulate transnational activities and to govern the global commons A new governance - It supplements a focus on the formal institutions of government with recognition of more diverse activities that blur the boundary of state and society o Draws attention to the complex processes an interactions involved in governing - Governance can also refer, more concretely, to the rise of new processes of governing that are hybrid and multi-jurisdictional with plural stakeholders working together in networks o It describes the recent changes in the world - The state has become increasingly dependent on organizations in civil society and more constrained by international linkages On one hand… - The public sector in many states has shifted away from bureaucratic hierarchy and toward markets and networks - Governance here echoes the ways in which patterns of rule operate in and through groups in the voluntary and private sectors On the other hand… - States are increasingly tangled up in transnational and international settings as a result of the internationalization of industrial and financial transactions, the rise of regional blocs, and growing concerns about global problems such as terrorism and the environment - Governance here captures the formal and informal ways in which states have attempted to respond to changing global order - Issues of governance loom large in a world where government has become an increasingly complex matter dependent on diverse stakeholders with formal and informal links to one another - An important feature of the new governance is that it combines established administrative arrangements with features of the market - Governance arrangements are often hybrid practices, combining administrative systems with market mechanisms and non-profit organizations o Novel forms of mixed public-private or entirely private forms of regulation are developing  I.e. school reform often now combines older administration arrangements (school districts, ministries of education) with quasi-market strategies that are meant to give parents greater choice (charter schools, voucher systems) - Another distinctive feature of governance is that it is multijurisdictional and often transnational - Current levels of governance combine people and institutions across different policy sectors and different levels of government (local, regional, national, and international) o I.e. various efforts to regulate food standards and safety  International food safety standards are commonly established in Rome by Codex Alimentarius – itself a joint body of the World Health Organization and the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization; but if the USA imports fish from China, the presumption is that Chinese officials at the national and local level enforce these standards  The practice of regulating food safety operates simultaneously at international, national, and local levels - The third distinctive feature of governance is the increasing range and plurality of stakeholders o Interest groups of various sorts have long been present in the policy- making process  Nonetheless, a wider variety of non-governmental organizations are becoming active participants in governing  One reason for the increasing diversity of stakeholders is the explosion of advocacy groups during the last third of the twentieth century  Another reason is the increasing use of third party organizations to deliver state services. Arguably, yet another reason is the expansion of philanthropists and philanthropic organizations, both of which are becoming as prominent as they were in the nineteenth century  I.e. the Gates Foundation has both mounted a multi-city effort to reform urban school districts and embarked on a massive public health campaign in developing countries  The increasing range and variety of stakeholders had led to the emergence and active promotion of new practices and institutional designs, including public-private partnerships and collaborative governance - Gover
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