500 views in 11 days: Editorial for virtual special issue: The emergence of new forms of flexible governance arrangements in and for urban regions: an European perspective
There has been growing academic, theoretical and empirical interest in the past 35 years in ‘governance’, as employed to motivate cooperation in and across specialized systems, which impact the everyday life of citizens and organizations. Rhodes (1996Rhodes, R. (1996). The new governance: Governing without government. Political Studies,44, 652–667. 10.1111/j.1467-9248.1996.tb01747.x[CrossRef], [Web of Science ®]) notes that ‘governance’ is a pervasive, albeit inconsistent, term, whilst Jessop (1998Jessop, B. (1998). The rise of governance and the risks of failure: The case of economic development. International Social Science Journal,50, 29–45. 10.1111/issj.1998.50.issue-155[CrossRef]) traces its origin to the classical Latin and ancient Greek words for ‘steering boats’, in the sense of actions or manners of governing, guiding or ‘steering’ conduct, often overlapping with ‘government’. Academics define ‘governance’ in multiple ways (Stead, 2013Stead, D. (2013). Dimensions of territorial governance. Planning Theory and Practice,14, 142–147. 10.1080/14649357.2012.758494[Taylor & Francis Online]), which are not all mutually cognate (Rhodes, 1996Rhodes, R. (1996). The new governance: Governing without government. Political Studies,44, 652–667. 10.1111/j.1467-9248.1996.tb01747.x[CrossRef], [Web of Science ®]). Kohler-Koch and Eising (1999Kohler-Koch, B., & Eising, R. (1999). Governance in the European Union. A comparative assessment. In B. Kohler-Koch and R. Eising (Eds.), The transformation of governance in the European Union (pp. 267–285). London: Routledge. 10.4324/9780203279625[CrossRef]) argue that governance varies from country to country, and even within countries. The term is not static, but rather flexible and continually adapting, as shown by this special issue’s six papers.