Issues of governance in regional planning


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This is a lecture prepared for the Randstad Research Group of the Department of Urbanism of the TU Delft. It presents basic notions of governance and circumscribes these notions by presenting some issues or challenges concerning networked and multilevel governance.

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Issues of governance in regional planning

  1. 1. Issues of Governance in Spatial Planning Prepared by Roberto Rocco Chair Spatial Planning and Strategy TU DelftSpatialPlanning &Strategy
  2. 2. SpatialPlanning &Strategy
  3. 3. Governance entails an understanding of how policy making and implementation happens in complex societies
  4. 4. Consolidation of objectives in SpatialPlanning around the notion of sustainability: • Deliver sustainable and fair futures • Increase public goods • Redistribute gains • Increase life chances and prosperity
  5. 5. ‘Enhanced’ Sustainability “For sustainability to occur, it must occur simultaneously in each of its three dimensions” (economic, social and environmental) Larsen, 2012
  6. 6. ©Ronald Vogel The main goal is to create conditions for the full realization of human potentials, through healthy, sustainable and fair environments“Sustainable development”
  7. 7. ©Ronald Vogel Planners anddesigners are insertedin and must understand complex systems of governance
  8. 8. What’s Governance Again? Normative dimension X Descriptive dimension
  9. 9. The Normative Dimension: GovernanceThe great sectors ofsociety (civil society,public sector andprivate sector)ought to be in Civil Privatepositive tension,where they Society Sectorsimultaneouslyapply and receivepressure from othersectors. In doing so,they keep eachother in check andavoid overrunning Publiceach other. Theproblem with this Sectormodel is that noteveryone has anequal voice orpower to express hisor her views.
  10. 10. Networks of coalitions Civil Private Society Sector Civil Public Spatial Planners andAgents formnetworks of Sector designers are insertedcoalitions in networks (andbetween sectors and Publicwithin sectors bureaucracies).towards objectives Sector
  11. 11. Diagram by Shuying Yu, 2010
  12. 12. What’s governance again? Civil Private Society Sector Civil Public Sector Public SectorState (the rule of law)
  13. 13. What’s governance again? State (the rule of law) Values and nomrs (informal institutions)
  14. 14. Explains behaviours like patronage, nepotism, corruption, ingrained practices and traditions as well as and how networks are formedCommon values and norms (informal institutions)
  15. 15. The law is king in the nation State and its bound to a territory! Lex Rex (the law is king) We are (SamuelRutherford, not amused! 1644) versus Rex Lex Source: Wikipedia Commons.(The king is This work is in the public domain in the United States, and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less. the law)
  16. 16. The rule of lawThe rule of law providesthe framework for thePublic sector, the Privatesector and the Civilsociety to exist in certainforms and in certainrelationships with eachother.
  17. 17. Informal institutionsAre derived from common valuesand norms, which result in rules-in-use. Rules-in-use constitute bothformal and informal institutions.(Suwanna Rongwiriyaphanich based on E. Ostrom)
  18. 18. Why is governance important for us? These relationships are our object because we need to know: • How to operate with the relationships in place in order to better achieve objectives (significance for the way we do planning) • How to propose new relationships and tools to articulate different actors, to FORMULATE, develop and implement desirable spatial visions and guarantee political/ economical and institutional support and successful implementation.
  19. 19. Normative modelA network of agents that coexist inpositive tension in the societalarena State (the rule of law)
  20. 20. And the ‘governance of’ ©Ronald VogelGovernance refers to theemergence of a policymaking style dominated bycooperation amonggovernment levels andbetween public and nonpublic actors and the civilsociety.Papadopoulos, 2007
  21. 21. Changes in governing (& planning)Emergence of a particular style ofgoverning where there must besustained co-ordination andcoherence among a wide variety ofactors with different purposes andobjectives from all sectors ofsociety.Papadopoulos, 2007
  22. 22. ©Ronald VogelMultilevel governance ‘Involves a large number of decision-making arenas, differentiated along both functional and territorial lines and interlinked in a non- hierarchical way’ Eberlein and Kerwer, 2004
  23. 23. Network governancePolicy making and implementationis ‘shared’ by politicians,technocrats, experts, dedicatedagencies, authorities, semi privateand private companies, the public,NGOs, etc which constituteNETWORKS of policy and decisionmaking across levels, territories,mandates, etc.
  24. 24. Across Across Sectors Acrosssectors levels of of Across governsociety Adminis ment trative bounda ries
  25. 25. Multilevel Governance Ward (ellects the members of the Court of commons) City of London Corporation (borough) Greater London Authority English regions England United Kingdom European Union
  26. 26. Meaning of ‘local authority’ in the Local Government Act of 2000 (in England and Wales) (a)in relation to England— (i)a county council, (ii)a district council, (iii)a London borough council, (iv)the Common Council of the City of London in its capacity as a local authority, (v)the Council of the Isles of Scilly,
  27. 27. Networked decision making City of London Corporation Primary decision making Court of Lord Mayor + 2 Sheriffs Elected by livery men aldermen (108 livery companies) Court of Elected councilors by residents, 121 committees in 2012 commons landowners, land leasers (25 wards with different number 72 outside bodies of elected councilors)
  28. 28. Governance City of London Elected councilors UK Standing local orders authority legislation
  29. 29. Network Great London Plan European Union Directives and conventions Greater London that have subsequently been enacted into UK legislation Authority Elected by residents and influenced the develop- Mayor of London of London London Assembly (25) Elected by 14 constituencies ment of the thinking behindGovernance + 11 from a party list the Governments policies, like transport the Groundwater Directive police fire Primary decision making and the Environmental Impact Court Lord Mayor + Elected by 108 Assessment Directive, for livery companies example. of 2 Sheriffs aldermen Court Elected in 25 wards of 121 committees in 2012 by residents and commons landowners 72 outside bodies History, tradition, uses and customs UK Parliament UK House of Lords (powers are limited) Lords Temporal (Appointed) Standing local Lords Spiritual (Appointed) orders authority House of Commons MPs (Elected) legislation Queen (advised by Prime Minister) These include global treaties, such as Kyoto and strategies for dealing with the influences and effects of climate change and for integrat- ing sustainable development into the EUs environmental policies as a result of major conferences, including the World Summit on Sustainable Development. International protocols
  30. 30. Multilevel governance in emerging city- regionsUrbanisation in the Randstad, 1950 Urbanisation in the Randstad, 2010
  31. 31. Photo by São Paulo, Brazil, at NighExample of a NASA Earth Observatorycity-region inthe developing world where issues of regionalgovernance canbe identified: Sao Paulo 175 km
  32. 32. Multilevel governance in emerging city-regions 12. Water Sources Circuit 13. Mantiqueira Viracopos Airport 10. Bocaina 4. Campinas Campinas 5. Paraiba Macro- Axis 8. Bragantina Sao Jose dos Campos Jundiai 7. Jundiai Ernesto Stumpf Airpot Sao Paulo International Airport 11. Alto Paraiba 6. Sorocaba Campo de Marte Airport Sorocaba Sao Roque 1. Core 2. MASP Congonhas Airport Sorocaba Airport 14. Litoral Norte 9. Sao Roque 3. Santos Santos Port of Santos Main municipalities in the Expanded Metropolitan Complex Other municipalities in the Expanded Metropolitan Complex Other municipalities in the State of Sao Paulo Main highway Regional highway
  33. 33. Multilevel governance in emerging city-regions 12. Water Sources Circuit 13. Mantiqueira 10. Bocaina 4. Campinas Campinas 5. Paraiba Macro- Axis 8. Bragantina Sao Jose dos Campos Jundiai 7. Jundiai 11. Alto Paraiba 6. Sorocaba Sorocaba Sao Roque 1. Core 2. MASP 14. Litoral Norte 9. Sao Roque 3. Santos Santos 1. Core Municipality 8. Bragantina Peri-Metro Regional Unit 2. Greater Sao Paulo (MASP) 9. Sao Roque Peri-Metro Regional Unit 3. Metropolitan Santos 10. Bocaina Peri-Metro Regional Unit 4. Metropolitan CampinasCore: 11.3 million (31 sub-municipalities) 11. Alto Paraiba Peri-Metro Regional Unit 5. Paraiba Macro Axis Proto Metropolis 12. The Water Circuit Homogeneous Outer Metro Unit 6. Sorocaba Proto Metropolis 13. Mantiqueira Homogeneous Outer Metro Unit 7. Jundiai Peri-Metropolitan Regional Unit 14. Litoral Norte Homogeneous Outer Metro UnitMetro: 19.9 million (39 municipalities) Main unit urban node Other important urban node AirportMacro-metro: 27.6 million (95 municipalities) 0 15 30 45 km 1: 1 500 000 1 CM = 15 KM
  34. 34. Areas where multi-levelnetworked governance is required
  35. 35. Water and waste management Informal development around one of Sao Paulo’s water reservoirsSource: Google Earth
  36. 36. Sao Paulo Compnhia Metropolitana de Transportes Metropolitan mobility + 928 local bus lines on core municipality
  37. 37. Large Regional Infrastructure Congonhas: the busiest airport in South America andSource: Google Earth its integration in the city
  38. 38. Large Regional Infrastructure Source: The route of the proposed speed train between Rio de Janeiro and the city of Campinas
  39. 39. Environmental protection and management The new external ring road of Sao Paulo crossing the water reservoirs of the city and large parts of theSource: Google Earth Atlantic Forest
  40. 40. Policy formulation and implementation Networks involving: • public actors (politicians and administrators) in different decision levels • technocrats • economic agents • interest representatives (civil + corporate) • other stakeholders • experts (e.g. planners)
  41. 41. New forms of steering complex governance networks Deliberation Bargaining Compromise-seeking
  42. 42. Instead of... blueprintsPruitt-Igoe, Saint-Louis Missouri, 1950s. Source: development/
  43. 43. Why network governance?1. decisions with strong output legitimacy2. the content is more appropriate3. better accepted by target groups4. technically more adequate and politically more realistic decisions
  44. 44. Effects on the quality of ©Ronald Vogel our democracies
  45. 45. ©Ronald Vogel Now we will exploreissues of governance in detail
  46. 46. Main issues1.Hollowing of the State2.Accountability deficiency3.Multilevel nature4.Representation and visibility5.Decoupling of the realm of politics6.Composition of networks of governance
  47. 47. Detrimental characteristics of networked governance1. weak presence of citizen representatives in networks2. lack of visibility and distance from the democratic arena3. multilevel nature4. prevalence of ‘peer’ forms of accountability (‘old-boys’ groups)
  48. 48. Hollowing out of the StateThe networked nature ofgovernance structures have beentriggered by ideologies that endorsethe minimal state
  49. 49. But... ©Ronald Vogel they are ultimately the result of the complexity of our societies and of theirspatial embeddedness
  50. 50. ©Ronald VogelAccountability is at the core of discussions onnetworked governance
  51. 51. Accountabilityrefers to the attribution ofresponsibility and mandate, and thepossibility of check by other partiesinvolved.In network governance, it is difficultto attribute responsibility andmandates and ultimately difficult tohold anyone accountable (theproblem of many hands)
  52. 52. AccountabilityFor agents to be held accountable,they must be identifiable asaccountability holders and theymust belong to arenas where thereis a possibility of sanction
  53. 53. Photo source: Reuters/Toby Melville PoliticsFor elected officers, we might thinkthat elections are the ultimate testof accountability: the hangingsanction is the non-reelection
  54. 54. But...In networked governancestructures, the role of electedofficials is often not central in thedecision making process
  55. 55. Moreover... ©Ronald Vogel we shouldn’t narrow the issue of accountability to that of democratic control Grant & Keohane, 2004
  56. 56. Other forms of (necessary) accountability in policy making and implementation LegalFiscal Administrative
  57. 57. Weak visibilityDecisional procedures in policynetworks are often informal andopaque (as this facilitates theachievement of compromise)Networks dilute responsibilityamong a large number of actors(the problem of many hands)
  58. 58. Citizens as accountability holdeesCitizens should be the ultimateholdees of democratic accountabilitybut in reality the public is not theonly judge of governmentalperformance and in many instancescitizens can not sanction agents thatare responsibly for policies thataffect them directly (e.g. IMF,European Union, etc.)
  59. 59. TransparencyTransparency induces theaccountability holdee to providejustifications for their actions, butthere are no guarantees thataccountability holders can applysanctionsPublicity is a necessary condition fordemocracy but not a sufficient one
  60. 60. Multilevel aspects make competencies fuzzyComplex structures cutting acrossdecision levels (e.g. federal states,emerging city-regions, but also theEU, IMF, World Bank, etc)Entails cooperativeintergovernmental relations, butthe formal division of competenciesis often fuzzy (e.g. EU)
  61. 61. Transparency & couplingPolicy networks must be (re)coupled to publicrepresentative bodies that are able to regulateservice provision or policy implementation andwhich provide the tools for identifyingaccountability holders and also tools forsanctioning themPolicy networks must be re-coupled with thepublic arena
  62. 62. ©Ronald VogelIt is not that simple!
  63. 63. Composition of policy networks Policy networks are largely composed of bureaucrats, policy experts and interest representatives, who are often only indirectly accountable to citizens and sometimes only accountable to their peers (other experts)
  64. 64. Politics of problems ©Bloomberg Businessweek X©Shepard Fairey politics of opinion Politics of problems (problem solving politics) oriented towards a backstage network of knowledge and decision-making Politics of opinion is the traditional politics in the media, party struggles and ideological assertions
  65. 65. Peer accountabilityIn governance networks, publicaccountability is often replaced bypeer accountabilityDurable cooperative interactionsbetween actors are expected togenerate self-limitation, empathyand mutual trust, but also mutualblack mailing and excessive relianceon reputation and trust
  66. 66. Representation and visibility In order to have good governance, networks must be sufficiently representative and pluralist Problem of ‘old boys club’ and the ‘incompetent subject’
  67. 67. Peer accountability... often dwells in one single world view, denying that there are other kinds of knowledge that are relevant (white male Western capitalist technocrat )President Kennedy visits NY World Fair, Photo source:
  68. 68. The problem of the ‘incompetentactor’ refers to the Foucaultian ideathat knowledge is the property ofcertain groups, while other groups donot have their knowledge recognizedas valid
  69. 69. All this means that spatial plannersmust adopt a different attitudetowards plan-making andimplementation. They need to performnew roles...
  70. 70. THENAll knowing V., a y oung w oman planne r Robe rt Moses NOW Mediator
  71. 71. ©Ronald VogelChallenge (for planners?) to clarify and strengthen the democratic anchorage of network forms of governance
  72. 72. Participation makes governance more effective• Strengthens democracy• Improves legitimacy• Builds support and understanding for actions• Likely to deliver more effective results• A strong argument for participation is that knowledge is constructed in communication. It would be therefore unethical and unintelligent to impose top-down solutions that do not take into account the knowledge of stakeholders.
  73. 73. Systems of governance A map of th e world, hig hlighted on a scale from light blue to based on th black, e score each country received acc ording to Th Economists e Democracy survey for 2 Index 010, from a scale of 10 to 0, with 10 being the m democratic, ost and 0 being democratic. the least Hong Kong (score 5.85) and P alestine (sco re 5.44) were also in cluded in th e survey but are not visible on th is map.The Economist Intelligence Units Democracy Index as published in December 2010. The palest blue countries get a score above 9 out of 10(with Norway being the most democratic country at 9.80), while the black countries score below 3 (with North Korea being the leastdemocratic at 1.08). Source: Economist Intelligent Unit, 2011. Available at
  74. 74. Electoral democraciesCountries highlighted in blue are designated "electoral democracies" in Freedom Houses 2010 survey Freedom in the World.Available at
  75. 75. Democracy on the riseThis graph shows Freedom Houses evaluation of the number of nations in the differentcategories given above for the period for which there are surveys, 1972–2005.
  76. 76. New participatory tools?
  77. 77. “The Arab Spring”Available at:
  78. 78. Occupy Wall Street
  79. 79. The role of social networkingFacebook played an extremely important role in the uprisingsthroughout the Middle East. Source:
  80. 80. Unequal access persists(but we are getting there)
  81. 81. ReferencesALBRECHTS, L., HEALEY, P. & KUNZMANN, K. R. 2003. Strategic Spatial Planning and Regional Governance in Europe. Journal of the American Planning Association, 69, 113-129.EBERLEIN, B. & KERWER, D. 2004. New Governance in the European Union: A Theoretical Perspective. Journal of Common Market Studies, 42, 128.PAPADOPOULOS, Y. 2007. Problems of Democratic Accountability in Network and Multilevel Governance. European Law Journal, 13, 469-486.RHODES, R. A. W. 1996. The New Governance: Governing without Government. Political Studies, XLIV, 652-667.SALET, W., THORNLEY, A. & KREUKELS, A. 2003. Metropolitan Governance and Spatial Planning, London, Spon Press.SEHESTED, K. 2009. Urban Planners as Network Managers and Metagovernors. Planning Theory and Practice, 10, 245-263.
  82. 82. Thanks for watching & listening! With special thanks to Ronald DaedalusVogel from Bremen, Germany: Daedalus (V) In or for the use of his pictures This is Should you have any doubts, please contact Ronald And visit our BLOG SpatialPlanning &Strategy Challenge(the(future