Governance and Metagovernance
Governance has been defined in many ways, and often as a ‘beyond government’ approach. This is strange, because if there are ‘new governance modes’ (Heritier), there should also be ‘old’ governance modes like hierarchy. Therefore, a pragmatic definition of governance should include all modes and could be (after Meuleman 2008): “The totality of interactions in which government, other public bodies, private sector and civil society participate (in one way or another), aimed at solving public challenges or creating public opportunities”.
Three typical styles of environmental governance can be distinguished: hierarchical governance, market governance and network governance. These styles are seldom found in a ‘pure’ form, but usually appear in combinations. The design and management of such combinations is called metagovernance, and a specific approach for sustainability governance which includes besides metagovernance other social science concepts is called transgovernance.
Metagovernance (Jessop 1997) is an approach aiming at combining and managing successful combinations of ideas from different gover-nance styles. It can be defined as an approach which produces some degree of coordinated governance, by designing and managing sound combinations of hierarchical, market, and network governance, to achieve the best possible outcomes from the viewpoint of those responsible for public sector performance. Metagovernance is not a super-governance style but an attitude and an approach that is expected to help overcome some of the typical failures of each of the governance styles and of their combinations (definition based on Meuleman 2008, PhD Thesis).
The Centre for European Policy Studies and the University of Leuven organised a book launch event on Louis’ new book ‘Metagovernance for Sustainability’ in Brussels on 17.10.2018. Geert Bouckaert moderated an expert & practitioners’ panel with Daniel Calleja Crespo, Saïd El Khadraoui, Andrea Renda, David Le Blanc, Ingeborg Niestroy, Ebba Dohlman, Roeland in ‘t Veld, Daniele Dotto and Karl Falkenberg, for around 100 participants. […]
“This is both a theoretical masterpiece and practical handbook” (Bob Jessop). “This is a ‘metabook’ which will inspire and guide all those responsible for and studying the SDGs” (Geert Bouckaert). “This book will become the core text in this area” (Paul Jackson). “This book is an important read for every practitioner from developing and developed countries alike” (Geraldine J Fraser-Moleketi). “A book that is a must for those who strive for enhanced professionalism in governance for sustainable development” (Roel in ‘t Veld). “What makes this book a must-read is the emphasis on how to get to differentiated governance for the SDGs” (Guenther Bachmann). […]