Modern Governance

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Modern governance refers to the concept of the State being dependant on heterarchical regulation mechanisms, caused by the loss or delegation of its power and competencies, to various local, national and international entities. This concept is used as an instrument for analysis and action, contributing to the solution of the crisis in the governance of the State (Hufty, 2009).

Hufty highlights three fundamental models of regulating society: hierarchical (by the authorities), economic (by the market) and heterarchical (by self-organised networks and associations) (Hufty, 2009). The expansion of the heterarchical model, to the detriment of others, is causing a breakdown and the apparent crisis in hierarchical rationality of the State (Hufty, 2009). Furthermore, Hufty’s analysis disputes the crisis in the governance of the State, concluding that this is a phenomenon transitioning the role of the State from the hierarchical regulator to a heterarchical facilitator, which is a solution to the crisis (Hufty, 2009).

According to Hufty, the State’s role should transition to that of a facilitator (Hufty, 2009). However, it could be argued; that the State already plays the role of facilitator. The State initiates the delegation processes and enters into arrangements with delegated entities and indirectly becomes part of a heterarchical mechanism. The awareness of the entity being part of a larger network whilst not important in the scope of an individual arrangement, it is important from a governance perspective, as it enables an understanding of the system as a whole, including an account of all interconnected systems that constitute the system.

In the absence of awareness of its position, the State finds itself unable to manoeuvre due to the complicated nature of arrangements in the hierarchical mechanism. Furthermore, considering CGG’s role as a facilitator and their definition of governance, the State would require the capability of maintaining the perspective of the system as a whole which it has clearly failed to do manifesting in a perceived crisis.


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