o Definition of Governance
o Definition of Good Governance
o Its conceptual framework (based on lessons learned from history, freedom of thought and freedom of speech). • Elements of Good Governance
o Consensus oriented
o Effective and efficient
o Equitable and inclusive
o Follows rule of law, Justice
• Measures that test Good Governance
o The popular perception
o The poor perception
• Implementation of Good Governance
o Strategies to improve Governance (12 Point Agenda, April 1999) o Role of public sector and public servant
Good Governance and the Role of the Public Servant (Essay Paper 2000) The concept of "governance" is not new. It is as old as human civilization. Simply put "governance" means: the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or not implemented). Governance can be defined in different contexts, for example, governance may be defined the way socio-economic power is exercised in managing affairs within a community; one may relate governance to provision of justice and the promotion of human rights and some may advocate political participation. The World Bank defines Governance as management of State power with emphasis on the economic aspect of the management. Asian Bank and other International Financial Institutions emphasize certain elements which relate to development, growth and poverty. African Development Bank suggests that authoritarian Regimes committed to development might exhibit good Governance at middle and lower levels. The danger in such agenda driven definition is that it might ignore the interests, concerns and the psyche of the poor. Probably, it’ll be useful to define governance by elaborating all the essential elements which are vital for good governance to exist in any circumstances and contexts. UNDP comprehensively defines governance as "the exercise of economic, political, and administrative authority to manage a country’s affairs at all levels and the means by which states promote social cohesion and integration, and ensure the well-being of their populations. It embraces all methods used to distribute power and manage public resources, and the organizations that shape government and the execution of policy. It encompasses the mechanisms, processes and institutions, through which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise their legal rights, meet their obligations and resolve their differences." According to this definition, "Good Governance therefore depends on public participation to ensure that political, social and economic priorities are based on a broad societal consensus and that the poorest and most vulnerable populations can directly influence political decision making, particularly with respect to the allocation of development resources. Good governance is also effective and equitable, and promotes the rule of law and the transparency of institutions, officials, and transactions". In brief, good governance refers to a high quality of processes by which decisions affecting public affairs are reached and implemented, and it helps to ensure that all, including poor and other disadvantaged groups, have the means to influence decision making and their implementation, to make contributions in overall development of the country, to share the benefits of this development and improve their lives and livelihoods, and have adequate access to basic services.
The ultimate test of good governance is the broader satisfaction and ownership by the people. It requires a broad and long-term perspective on what is needed for sustainable human development and how to achieve the goals of such development. This can only result from an understanding of the historical, cultural and social contexts of a given society or community. And to develop such an understanding in society,...
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