Presentation by Witte & Brenner

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Innovation in Governance. The Role of Global Public Policy Networks

(Jan Martin Witte & Thorsten Benner, Global Public Policy Project)

Jan Martin Witte and Thorsten Benner started their presentation by outlining the context of global public policy networks (GPPs). GPPs exemplify the transformation of governance towards multi-level and multi-sectoral arrangements. Pulling together diverse groups and resources, these networks take advantage of technological innovation and political liberalization and enable participants to address issues that no group can resolve by itself.

The speakers went on to explain the key functions of these networks. GPPs:

facilitate the negotiation and setting of global standards;

serve as mechanisms for developing and disseminating knowledge;

make markets where they are lacking, and deepen them where they do not fulfil their potential;

serve as innovative implementation mechanisms; and

create trust and help to close the participatory gap.

Getting a network up and running requires personal and institutional leadership. Hereby, the key to success is an adequately balanced consultation. Two main challenges need to be addressed in this context. First, effective multisectoral cooperation requires substantial organizational change on the side of all actors involved. Second, GPPs need to meet the dual challenge of inclusion (local-global and North/South) to ensure legitimacy and sustainability. As a way forward, this challenge needs to be tackled effectively.

Finally, the creation of ‘best practice’ focal points and the promotion of social entrepreneurship were suggested.

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Contact Minu Hemmati and Felix Dodds for further information.