Critical Reflections on Interactive Governance
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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.
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Chapter 23: Conclusions: synthesizing key reflections and exploring new avenues for research and debate on interactive governance

Jurian Edelenbos and Ingmar van Meerkerk


In Chapter 23 the editors, Edelenbos and Van Meerkerk, discuss the recurring and prominent issues raised by the contributors in the book. In this chapter the contributions are synthesized along the distinction between civic-induced and government-induced interactive governance and the instrumental, cultural and democratic perspectives, leading to an agenda for research and debate on interactive governance. They also introduce the concept of cooperative democracy in order to sketch a new form and approach to civic-induced interactive governance that stresses the emergence of civic initiatives and the challenge for governments to find their (new) positions and roles in making interactive governance meaningful, legitimate and effective.

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