28 December 2016

SOG is the IPSA Research Committee on the Structure and Organization of Government.  It has been the academic sponsor of the journal Governance  since its creation by SOG in 1988.    Learn more.
Thirty years of Governance
Reagan and Gorbachev in Red Square, March 1988
2017 marks the publication of volume 30 of Governance.  In a commentary in the current issue, Colin Campbell and Guy Peters reflect on the launch of the journal in 1988.  "The major journals in policy and administration were much less internationalized than they are now," Campbell and Peters write.  There was "a need for a journal that would address public policy and administration in a comparative manner."    Read the commentary.   

According to the most recent data provided by Journal Citation Reports, Governance  is ranked #2 by impact factor in Public Administration, and #5 in Political Science.  It is the only journal in the world that is ranked in the top five in both fields.  This newsletter is delivered to over five thousand academics and professionals around the world.
Kidnapping for ransom: The art of the deal
In an article just published in Governance, Anja Shortland examines the "private governance regime" that has emerged to regulate the payment of ransoms to kidnappers.   Read the article .   Shortland also discusses her article on the Washington Post's Monkey Cage blog.   Read the column .
Thirtieth anniversary essays
To mark our anniversary, we have published eight essays that examine the theory and practice of governance over the last thirty years:

Susan Rose-Ackerman.   What Does Governance Mean?   "'Governance' is an ambiguous term that often substitutes for something else. It is often invoked to signal that the political issues at the core of government are off the table."     Read the article

Merilee Grindle.  Good Governance, R.I.P.: A Critique and an Alternative.  "As a concept, good governance more often obscures than enlightens.  The concept has encouraged muddy thinking about the role of governance in the development process."   Read the article .

Geert Bouckaert.  Taking Stock of "Governance": A Predominantly European Perspective. "Ideally, governance research is rigorous and relevant. In reality, it is sometimes not so rigorous, and also not so relevant."  Read the article.

Guy Peters and Jon Pierre.  Two Roads to Nowhere: Appraising 30 Years of Public Administration Research. "Public administration needs to return to thinking about the 'big picture' rather than the fragments that dominate much of the contemporary work in the discipline."  Read the article.

Frank Baumgartner.  Creating an Infrastructure for Comparative Policy Analysis. "The other types of barriers, those coming from mere national or literature-based tradition, however, have no particular redeeming value. As we develop a literature ever more deeply integrated across different traditions, we will drop these artificial distinctions. And that will leave us with our true theoretical differences."  Read the article.

Bert Rockman.   The Melting Down of Government: A Multi-Decade Perspective.  "Government can only be part of the solution if it is adequately resourced and finds the will to be part of the solution. Under current circumstances, the joint probability of meeting those conditions is close to zero." Read the article .

Rahul Mukherji.   Governance Reform in a Weak State: Thirty Years of Indian Experience. "India is home to a weak state in an eco-system powerfully shaped by social forces. The state can neither make a Dengist nor a Lee Kuan Yew type move to swiftly turn the page toward a new policy paradigm."  Read the article .

Yijia Jing.  The Transformation of Chinese Governance: Pragmatism and Incremental Adaption. "Chinese governance has been transformed through a combination of pragmatic thinking and incremental adaptation of institutions."  Read the article .
New books from SOG members
Arild Waeraas and Moshe Maor  are editors of Organizational Reputation in the Public Sector , just published by Routledge.  More information here .  

A new book by  Alasdair Roberts Four Crises of American Democracy , has been published by Oxford University Press.   More information about the book here .

If you are a SOG member and have a new book, let us know.   Join SOG here.  The SOG newsletter reaches over five thousand academics and professionals around the world.
Call for nominations: 2017 Levine Book Prize
The Levine Book Prize Committee is seeking nominations for the 2017 Levine Prize.   More details here .  The committee is composed of Professor Tobias Bach (University of Oslo), Professor Caspar van den Berg (Leiden University), and Professor Ting Gong (City University of Hong Kong).    Information about previous winners is available here .