Reform, Governance and the Future
Reform: A Memoir. Wellington: Victoria University Press.
39 Pages Posted: 31 Jan 2017
Date Written: 2013
This chapter is taken from the book ‘Reform: A Memoir’ by Sir Geoffrey Palmer. Much of the book is concerned with his involvement with New Zealand’s political and governmental institutions and how they function, along with suggestions of how they may function better. This chapter examines the characteristics of ‘failed nations’, as defined by social, economic and political indicators. It considers the recent scholarship proposing that the root of the problem lies in the organisation of society. The chapter asserts that, how public power is distributed between public institutions, how the decision-makers are identified and to whom they are accountable, are therefore important questions to ask for social improvement. It is also established that ‘successful countries’, such as the relatively well-governed country of New Zealand, also have plenty of scope for improvement on many fronts. There are no final victories either in politics or policy. This chapter suggests the task of reform is never done, and we need to embark with confidence on a programme to improve our governance and our basic democratic institutions.
Keywords: Public power, public institutions, governance, policy, democracy, New Zealand
JEL Classification: K00, K10, K14, K40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation