This insightful book develops a new theoretical account of governance as regimes of governing practices that shape the political ordering of social relations. This account develops insights from sociology, politics and political economy and is ‘post’-poststructuralist in scope. Chapters explore and synthesise three key features of governing that are often treated as contradictory: the historical contingency of statehood, the structured and unequal distribution of power and authority in governing, and the transformative possibilities of political action. This book proposes an innovative approach to governance analysis as a critical mode of empirical enquiry that is systematic, contextualised and holistic. In doing so, it also provides a new analytical framework to facilitate empirical investigation.
Featuring tools of situated critique and analytical contextualisation, and with case study chapters that apply this framework in a range of empirical settings, this book is vital reading for all researchers of public policy and governance. Furthermore, researchers applying state theories to empirical investigation, and postgraduate students scrutinising complex governance settings, will also benefit from this book’s theoretical account, analytical framework and case examples.