The Challenges of Social -Environmental governance
November 21-27, 2003
Bras¨ªlia and Piren¨®polis - Brazil
is on the agenda of international institutions. Various programs
developed by the United Nations give priority to governance
in their debates, research and projects. The World Bank and
the IMF address the topic in their policy papers and their
directives make great reference to the notion of governance.
their coincidental interest in the subject, both the World
Bank and the IMF, along with other institutions, have very
different definitions of governance and what it embraces.
World Bank, for example, defines governance as: "the
traditions and institutions by which authority in a country
is exercised for the common good. This includes (i) the process
by which those in authority are selected, monitored and replaced,
(ii) the capacity of the government to effectively manage
its resources and implement sound policies, and (iii) the
respect of citizens and the state for the institutions that
govern economic and social interactions among them".
has the following definition:"Governance can be seen
as the exercise of economic, political and administrative
authority to manage a country's affairs at all levels. It
comprises the mechanisms, processes and institutions through
which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise
their legal rights, meet their obligations and mediate their
different definitions reveal distinct approaches to development,
society and whom governments serve.
particularly those with leadership responsibilities, need
to have a deeper understanding of governance. On one hand,
this is because understanding the dynamics of relations between
governments and societies, as well as the internal processes
of governments, is essential in order to have a clearer standing
and to bring about a more efficient intervention in reality.
On the other hand, because being prepared to discuss the theme
of governance is key to a more profitable relationship with
the main players in the international political scenario.