Open and collaborative governance
With the start of the new century, societies have begun to feel the immediate and daily pressure of change. There are social, economic and technological changes that reveal the inability of governments to solve the problems of contemporary societies by themselves, as they require more interactive and plural decision-making.
In this setting, the concept of Governance emerges emphatically as an alternative for a new style of governing. Governance constitutes a new process for running society (Koiman, 1993, Modern Governance: New Government-Society Interactions) in which relationships between Government, Private Sector and Citizens are horizontal.
The United Nations Development Programme defines Governance as “the complex mechanisms, processes, relationships and institutions through which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise their rights and obligations and mediate their differences” (Reconceptualising Governance, 1997, p. 9).
This new form of “government” gives rise to interdependencies between political and social actors and to modes of cooperation to achieve greater effectiveness in responding to social, economic and political challenges, thus moving away from the characteristic rigidity of the traditional hierarchical model.
In essence, multilateralism appears as a feature linked to modern governance, where cooperative and networked management and the interaction between public and private sectors and society as a whole are fundamental for administering public affairs of common interest.
Therefore, governance of public affairs means incorporating into government actions processes that are efficient, effective and responsible, as well as processes related to inclusion, democratization, participation, accessibility and transparency.
The contemporary concept of governance encompasses the following two premises:
- Governance as a substantive element is, in essence, open and collaborative.
- Governance can be qualified by various adjectives that give it meaning. Thus, we may speak of innovation governance, global governance and digital governance, among many other forms.
The “GKA SOCIAL 2021 Conference – San Sebastián, Spain. 9th International Conference on Social Sciences” is conceived as a meeting space for debate between experts in the subject matter, researchers and civil society on theoretical and practical aspects of, and challenges associated with, open and collaborative Governance from a chiefly normative standpoint, but also approaching the concept through the analysis and discussion of the processes involved in its adjectivization.