Trajectories for modernizing local governance: Revisiting the Flanders case


Local government plays a central but altering role in local governance. Together with the shift from a night-watchman state to a welfare state, the models of governance provision changed. Government itself became larger and more scattered throughout the local community. Moreover, government was no longer the only governance provider. Many actors were involved in governance with a diversity of steering relations. In our time, governance continues to change. What are the emerging models of local governance today? After sorting out some terminological and methodological issues, we describe four emerging ideal-type models (i.e. the holding model, the autonomous networks model, the implementation model and the reintegration model), based on four societal scenarios (i.e. triumphant markets, hundred flowers, creative societies and turbulent neighbourhoods). The models represent four possible local governance futures. Next, the models are applied on two management issues: organizational structure and financial management. Finally, some embryonic evidence is given on the emergence of the models.

In Public management review