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Embedding participatory governance

Bussu, Sonia ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0360-7070, Bua, Adrian, Dean, Rikki and Smith, Graham (2022) Embedding participatory governance. Critical Policy Studies, 16 (2). pp. 133-145. ISSN 1946-0171

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Abstract

This symposium examines the challenges and opportunities of recent efforts at embedding participatory governance. It draws together original research that engages theoretically and empirically with some fundamental questions: •What are the challenges of embedding participatory governance in policy-making? •What happens when social movements have opportunities to shape the institutionalization of PG processes? Can they reanimate the radical potential of citizen participation for social transformation? •How can the tensions between the different demands of lay citizens, organized civil society, political parties, and public officials be managed? In this introductory article, we provide a definition of embeddedness, outlining its spatial, temporal, and practices dimensions, in so doing distinguishing embeddedness from institutionalization, with which it has often been used interchangeably. Our aim is to delineate the breadth of the concept, drawing together its many uses into a systematic framework that can both guide future research and practical experimentation. In particular, our hope is to turn more attention to the informal practices that are essential for embedding. The contributions to the symposium shift attention from institutional design to embedding dynamics and how these work to open or close spaces for meaningful citizen input.

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