Collaborative Governance Regimes

Kirk Emerson and Tina Nabatchi

"Collaborative Governance Regimes challenges scholars to discipline the study of collaborative governance in order to strengthen its pratice. . . . A significant, much needed, and long overdue step in the right direction. "
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Whether the goal is building a local park or developing disaster response models, collaborative governance is changing the way public agencies at the local, regional, and national levels are working with each other and with key partners in the nonprofit and private sectors. While the academic literature has spawned numerous case studies and context- or policy-specific models for collaboration, the growth of these innovative collaborative governance systems has outpaced the scholarship needed to define it.

Collaborative Governance Regimes breaks new conceptual and practical ground by presenting an integrative framework for working across boundaries to solve shared problems, a typology for understanding variations among collaborative governance regimes, and an approach for assessing both process and productivity performance. This book draws on diverse literatures and uses rich case illustrations to inform scholars and practitioners about collaborative governance regimes and to provide guidance for designing, managing, and studying such endeavors in the future.

Collaborative Governance Regimes will be of special interest to scholars and researchers in public administration, public policy, and political science who want a framework for theory building, yet the book is also accessible enough for students and practitioners.

Table of Contents


Part I: An Overview of Collaborative Governance
Introduction: Stepping In—The Context for Collaborative Governance
1. Collaborative Governance and Collaborative Governance Regimes

Part II: The Integrative Framework for Collaborative Governance
2. Initiating Collaborative Governance: The System Context,
Drivers, and Regime Formation
Case Illustration: National Collaborative for Higher Education
3. Collaboration Dynamics: Principled Engagement, Shared
Motivation, and the Capacity for Joint Action
Case Illustration: The Everglades Restoration Task Force,
by Tanya Heikkila and Andrea K. Gerlak
4. Generating Change: Collaborative Actions, Outcomes, and
Case Illustration: The Military Community Compatibility

Part III: Case Studies of Collaborative Governance Regimes
5. Who Speaks for Toronto? Collaborative Governance in the
Civic Action Alliance,
by Alison Bramwell
6. Collaborative Governance in Alaska: Responding to Climate
Change Threats in Alaska Native Communities,
by Robin Bronen
7. Power and the Distribution of Knowledge in a Local
Groundwater Association in Guadalupe Valley, Mexico
by Chantelise Pells

Part IV: Collaborative Governance Regimes
8. Moving from Genus to Species: A Typology of Collaborative
Governance Regimes
9. Assessing the Performance of Collaborative Governance

Conclusion: Stepping Back, Stepping Up, and Stepping Forward—
Summary Observations and Recommendations

About the Authors and Contributors


"Collaborative Governance Regimes challenges scholars to discipline the study of collaborative governance in order to strengthen its pratice. . . . A significant, much needed, and long overdue step in the right direction."—Journal of Public Administration Review and Theory

"This is the best book ever published on collaborative governance. The authors have created a new analytic framework that encompasses all prior work on the topic. Every scholar of collaborative governance should own this book."—Craig Thomas, professor, Daniel J. Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington

"Emerson and Nabatchi have written a marvelous and timely book on one of the most important public administration topics of our time—collaborative governance. The book is theoretically rich, practically useful, and very well written. It is a must-read for all those wanting to, or needing to, collaborate to advance the common good."—John Bryson, McKnight Presidential Professor of Planning and Public Affairs, Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota

"This volume offers a compelling framework for understanding collaborative governance and the authors apply that framework to actual cases. It is rare that such an intellectually-grounded pursuit can result in usable and actionable knowledge. This book does just that."—Michael McGuire, professor and executive associate dean for Bloomington School of Public and Environmental Affairs, Indiana University


Supplemental Materials


About the Author

Kirk Emerson is a professor of practice in collaborative governance in the School of Government and Public Policy at the University of Arizona. She directs the school’s Graduate Program in Collaborative Governance.

Tina Nabatchi is an associate professor of public administration and international affairs in the Maxwell School of Citizenship & Public Affairs at Syracuse University. She is also the co-director of the Collaborative Governance Initiative at the Maxwell School’s Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration.

280 pp., 6 x 9
4 boxes, 9 figures, 12 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-252-5
Dec 2015

280 pp., 6 x 9
4 boxes, 9 figures, 12 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-253-2
Dec 2015

280 pp.
4 boxes, 9 figures, 12 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-254-9
Dec 2015

Public Management and Change series
Beryl A. Radin, Series Editor

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