Theoretical Foundations of Governance

Morten Egeberg, Åse Gornitzka and Jarle Trondal have contributed with a chapter on organisation theory in the Handbook on Theories of Governance.

The book is edited by Christopher Ansell and Jacob Torfing.

About the book

In the past two decades, governance theories have arisen semi-independently across multiple disciplines. The term ‘governance’ is now one of the most frequently used social science concepts in the world. No single theory encompasses this diverse body of work, but rather multiple theories with different aims and perspectives. The Handbook on Theories of Governance collects these theories of governance together as an analytical resource for scholars, students and practitioners.

The Handbook advances a deeper theoretical understanding of governance processes while illuminating the interdisciplinary foundations of the field. By reviewing key theoretical concepts, the Handbook provides a basic conceptual toolkit for analyzing contemporary governance and offers insights into how governance research contributes to social science theory development. By canvassing the different forms of governance, the chapters also reveal the diversity of contemporary governing practices.

Organisation theory

In their chapter, Egeberg, Gornitzka and Trondal offer an organisational approach to governance. This may be useful in at least two respects. First, it may add new knowledge on how different governance architectures shape governance processes. Second, it may also add practical value for administrative policy. Either way, governance cannot be adequately explained without including its organisational dimension.

The authors argue that organisational factors (independent variables) might intervene in governance processes (dependent variables), and suggest a list of four such independent variables. The second part of the chapter flips this relationship around, and deals with theories of organisational structures in which organisational change constitutes the dependent variable.

Full info

Morten Egeberg, Åse Gornitzka and Jarle Trondal
Organization theory

In: Handbook on Theories of Governance
Christopher Ansell and Jacob Torfing (eds)

Edward Elgar, 2016
ISBN 978-1-78254-849-2


Published Aug. 18, 2016 3:59 PM - Last modified Jan. 28, 2022 4:33 AM