Network Governance: Effective and Legitimate?
Tanja A. Börzel, Diana Panke – 2007
Network governance has been present in the domestic affairs of highly industrialized states for a long time. Corporatist arrangements, for instance, constitute one such form of network governance. With the ‘governance turn’ in International Relations and European Studies, (Jachtenfuchs 2003) network governance beyond the nation state has been increasingly studied (Reinicke 1998; Kohler-Koch & Eising 1999; Börzel & Risse 2005). Many authors consider network governance as a significant solution to a whole variety of problems relating to governance within and beyond the nation-state (Marin & Mayntz 1991; Kooiman 1993; Le Galès & Thatcher 1995; Reinicke 1998; Cutler, et al. 1999). In this perspective, the success of network governance (NWG) is defined on the basis of the NWG’s effectiveness. As a consequence, legitimacy, as the second yardstick for good (and successful) governance, is often neglected. This chapter is based on the assumption that the criterion for successful governance is twofold: it must be effective and legitimate. Hence, overemphasizing effectiveness as yardstick for successful governance — as much of the literature on network governance does — is problematic and might lead to attestations of success, where there is none. Another strand of the literature takes legitimacy issues seriously and explicitly criticizes network governance for its lack of democratic participation and accountability (e.g. Scharpf 1993; Benz 1995; Brühl et al. 2001).