1st Edition

Collaborative Governance Principles, Processes, and Practical Tools

    224 Pages 18 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    224 Pages 18 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    Traditional governance, even when it is functioning effectively and fairly, often produces clear winners and clear losers, leaving smoldering resentments that flare up whenever there is a shift in the balance of power. Over the past two and a half decades, a new style of governance has arisen to disrupt some of that winner-takes-all dynamic, offering parties a means to collectively navigate their interests in a highly focused and democratic way. Collaborative Governance is the first comprehensive practice-based textbook on the topic, presenting a solid grounding in relevant theory while also focusing on case studies, process design, and practical tools. Bringing together theory and tools from the fields of negotiation and mediation, as well as political science and public administration, this book introduces students and practitioners to the theory of collaborative governance in the context of practical applications.

    Coverage includes:

    • A connection of the practices of collaborative governance with the field’s theoretical underpinnings;

    • Tools for students and practitioners of collaborative governance—as well as public administrators and other possible participants in collaborative governance processes—to discern when collaborative governance is appropriate in politically complex, real-world settings;

    • A roadmap for students, practitioners, and process participants to help them design—and effectively participate in—productive, efficient, and fair collaborative governance processes;

    • An exploration of constitutional democracy and the ways in which collaborative governance can be used as a tool in building a more just, fair, and functional society.

    Collaborative Governance is an ideal primary textbook in public administration, planning, and political science courses, as well as a jargon-free primer for professionals looking to learn more about the theory and practice of this important field.

    Section 1: Definitions, Context, and Dynamics 1.  Definitions and Descriptions 2.  Collaborative Governance in a Constitutional Context   3.  Typologies  4.   Fundamental Dynamics of Collaboration  Section 2: Framework and Process  5.  Assessment   6.  Designing and Organization   7.  Deliberation and Decision-Making  8.  Implementation and Adaptation   Section 3: Skills to Improve Collaborative Governance  9.   Strengthening Collaborative Governance Groups  10.   Individual Leadership Tools  11. Conclusion




    Stephen Greenwood is the Director of Training and Academic Services at the National Policy Consensus Center in the Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University, recognized as one of the nation’s most prolific university-based centers for advancing innovative, collaborative approaches for addressing public issues. In his current position, he has designed and led collaborative governance and leadership training both nationally and internationally. He is also the lead for Portland State University’s online Graduate Certificate Program in Collaborative Governance and teaches the graduate-level class, “Foundations of Collaborative Governance.”

    Laurel Singer is the Executive Director of the National Policy Consensus Center in the Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University. Since joining NPCC in 2006, Laurel has served in several leadership roles, including directing NPCC’s Oregon Consensus, Oregon Solutions, and training programs. For close to 30 years, Laurel has served as a champion for the use of collaborative decision-making and problem-solving. Her work as a private practice mediator for over 16 years focused on designing, convening, and facilitating collaborative process to address complex public policy across a wide range of issues. She is currently a founding faculty member in PSU’s fully online graduate certificate in collaborative governance.

    Wendy Willis is the founder and Director of Oregon’s Kitchen Table, a statewide civic engagement program of the National Policy Consensus Center in the Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University. Wendy also serves as the Executive Director of the Deliberative Democracy Consortium, a global alliance of leading scholars and organizations working in the fields of deliberative democracy, public participation, and civic engagement. Wendy is also a widely published poet and essayist, writing frequently about American democracy and civic life. Her most recent book, These are Strange Times, My Dear, was released in 2019.

    "This is a wide-ranging book that provides important information for anyone hoping to utilize the concepts of collaborative governance. The book is very timely as we find ourselves increasingly facing challenges to legal authority and political legitimacy in a backdrop characterized by disparities in wealth, serious questions surrounding racial justice and equality for all, and the looming dangers of climate change. The text is particularly useful in providing concrete advice for keeping the process of multi-party decision making on track once actual people get involved and introduce the types of challenges that inevitably arise in collaborative efforts."

    Eric Henson, Harvard University, USA


    "Collaborative Governance is a must read for students, practitioners and academics who are interested in the art and science of creating and sustaining collective agreements both within and outside formal structures of political authority. Unlike many popular books grounded in psychological techniques for resolving conflicts, this book draws from political science and sociology to identify the social and institutional conditions that need to be in place to create agreements that last. The book provides a pathway for addressing intractable an wicked community problems."  

    Douglas Morgan, Portland State University, USA