Elective course; Governance concentration / specialization

As public policy problems have become ever more complex and contested, there has been a growing emphasis on replacing traditional vertical governance structures such as bureaucracies with horizontal policy making networks. This course introduces students to networked governance --as a concept, a process and a practice. Part one explores the drivers that have pushed networks into the forefront of public policy making and examines their basic structural and operating characteristics. Governance networks have been particularly fashionable in the global policy domain. Part two takes a more detailed look at global policy making networks --their origins and applications. Part three examines key network design and management tools and principles as well as their applications. Networked governance has not been without critiques and part four will look at those critiques. The fifth and final part of this course is dedicated to a detailed and in-depth case study of a global policy network that will allow students to examine, apply and review the aspects covered in the course.

Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of the course, students should: 

  • be familiar with the contemporary challenges of managing and implementing complex public policy challenges.
  • understand the basic structural and process characteristics of networks and how they differ from markets and hierarchies as alternative forms of social organization.
  • be familiar with the basic skills necessary to design and manage governance networks.
  • understand some of the potential weaknesses of governance networks.
  • be able to critically examine, assess and evaluate existing multi-stakeholder governance networks.

Participation: 10%
Reflection sheets/quizzes: 15%
Presentation (individual/teams): 20%
The precise nature of the individual/team work will be decided and announced once the total number of course participants is known.
Final paper: 50%
The goal of this paper (up to 3000 words) is to critically assess a global policy network. You are provided with an in depth case study and are asked to evaluate the network by paying special attention to its design and management and are asked to make concrete suggestions on how to improve its performance.