GoodGovernance.org (an Australian organization for local governments, reference below) writes that:
“Good governance is about the processes for making and implementing decisions. It’s not about making ‘correct’ decisions, but about the best possible process for making those decisions.”
Characteristics of good governance
Most lists of the characteristics of good governance follow those outlined a 2009 paper published by the United Nations (reference below). They have been summarized in the local government context by GoodGovernance.org in the direct quotes below:
Good governance is accountable
“Accountability is a fundamental requirement of good governance. Local government has an obligation to report, explain and be answerable for the consequences of decisions it has made on behalf of the community it represents.
Good governance is transparent
“People should be able to follow and understand the decision-making process. This means that they will be able to clearly see how and why a decision was made – what information, advice and consultation council considered, and which legislative requirements (when relevant) council followed.
Good governance follows the rule of law
“This means that decisions are consistent with relevant legislation or common law and are within the powers of council.
Good governance is responsive
“Local government should always try to serve the needs of the entire community while balancing competing interests in a timely, appropriate and responsive manner.
Good governance is equitable and inclusive
“A community’s wellbeing results from all of its members feeling their interests have been considered by council in the decision-making process. This means that all groups, particularly the most vulnerable, should have opportunities to participate in the process.
Good governance is effective and efficient
“Local government should implement decisions and follow processes that make the best use of the available people, resources and time to ensure the best possible results for their community.
Good governance is participatory
“Anyone affected by or interested in a decision should have the opportunity to participate in the process for making that decision. This can happen in several ways – community members may be provided with information, asked for their opinion, given the opportunity to make recommendations or, in some cases, be part of the actual decision-making process.”
Atlas topic, subject, and course
GoodGovernance.org, What is Good Governance? at http://www.goodgovernance.org.au/about-good-governance/what-is-good-governance/, accessed 8 October 2017.
United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (2009), What is Good Governance? at http://www.unescap.org/sites/default/files/good-governance.pdf, accessed 8 October 2017.
Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified 8 October 2017.
Image: Takshilaonline.com, Good Governance, at http://www.takshilaonline.com/gk/polity/good-governance-concept-public-administration-notes-paper-1-unit-1-administrative-theory-introduction-157.htm, accessed 8 October 2017.