Barriers and Responses
Edited by Richard D. Margerum and Cathy J. Robinson
Chapter 2: Theoretical perspectives on the challenges of collaboration
AbstractCollaborative approaches to governance are becoming increasingly important for addressing complex planning and public policy issues. Throughout the world, these approaches have been widely used to address complex, multi-jurisdictional and cross-boundary problems. While much literature has focused on case studies of success and best practices for effective collaboration, there has been less interrogation of the challenges to effective collaboration. In particular, there has been limited discussion of contextual, societal, political, institutional and other factors that make successful collaboration difficult, prone to missteps or likely to fail. This chapter reviews a range of literature to identify several major themes related to the challenges of collaboration: problem and its context, policy and political setting, collaborative ability and capacity, and participant factors. Many of these themes are also relevant to other kinds of governance settings, but they present particularly difficult challenges for collaboration.
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