Investigating Policy Processes: The Governance Analytical Framework (GAF)
RESEARCH FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: FOUNDATIONS, EXPERIENCES, AND PERSPECTIVES, pp. 403-424, U. Wiesmann, H. Hurni, ed., Geographica Bernensia, 2011
22 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2012
Date Written: 2011
Societies develop ways of making decisions regarding collective problems, thereby creating norms, rules, and institutions; this is what governance is about. In policy research, governance has become an important focus of attention; but debates show a lack of clarity at the conceptual level and a confusion between the use of the concept for prescriptive and analytical purposes. The present article is based on the hypothesis that using a clarified, non-normative governance perspective in policy research can contribute to an improved understanding of political processes, including formal and unrecognised ones, those embedded in larger and smaller social systems, as well as both vertical and horizontal political arrangements. The paper is the result of a collaborative engagement with the concept of governance within several networks, leading to the development of the Governance Analytical Framework (GAF). The GAF is a practical methodology for investigating governance processes, based on five analytical tools: problems, actors, social norms, processes, and nodal points. Besides describing the conceptual sources and analytical purpose of these five tools, the paper presents examples of how the GAF can be operationalised.
Keywords: Governance, governance processes, social norms, institutions, nodal points
JEL Classification: D23, D70, O20
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation