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Critical Reflections on Interactive Governance

Critical Reflections on Interactive Governance

Self-organization and Participation in Public Governance

Edited by Jurian Edelenbos and Ingmar van Meerkerk

In many countries, government and society have undergone a major shift in recent years, now tending toward ‘smaller government’ and ‘bigger society’. This development has lent increased meaning to the notion of interactive governance, a concept that this book takes not as a normative ideal but as an empirical phenomenon that needs constant critical scrutiny, reflection and embedding in modern societies.

Chapter 15: Public engagement, governance and the pursuit of equity in contemporary urban revitalization: community benefits agreements (CBAs) with public versus nonprofit developers

Kelly L. Patterson, Molly Ranahan, Robert Mark Silverman and Li Yin

Subjects: politics and public policy, public policy, regulation and governance


Chapter 15 by Patterson, Ranahan, Silverman and Yin examines community benefits agreements (CBAs), an emerging form of public engagement and governance related to urban revitalization policy in the USA. CBAs are equity-based development strategies that focus on linking community benefits to private and non-profit sector urban revitalization projects. They exemplify emerging approaches to urban revitalization and governance that involve three distinct interests: labour and grassroots organizations; developers from the private and non-profit sectors; and local government. In this new form of governance, the government’s traditional role in the implementation of urban revitalization projects has shifted to public and non-profit organizations. This shift reflects a more general trend toward the replacement of direct government implementation with shared governance strategies. In their chapter, Patterson et al. review empirical research on CBAs and then present four critical case studies. Their analysis focuses on public engagement strategies and governance in the CBA process. In particular, Patterson et al. compare negotiated agreements in which private versus non-profit sector developers play a key role.

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