As the introductory chapter explained, collaboration was popularized as an idea across much of the globe in the 1990s and 2000s, including the Global South, and was considerably influenced by international actors and donor non-governmental organizations (NGOs) as well as ideas circulating through nation states about modernizing public governance and management. From the basis of multiple definitions and mixed practices of collaborative governance, this chapter explores trends found through the comparative study of our eight cities, in the decade after the GEC. We aim to examine the impact of austerity on localized collaborative structures of policymaking. Specifically, the chapter elaborates three dimensions where interesting comparisons and contrasts were identified: in discourse, in agency and in the spaces utilized to facilitate alliance building and joint working. Trends in discourse, agency, and spaces of collaboration after the GEC are linked to the historical events and traditions highlighted in the introductory chapter.
With the exception of Baltimore (Pill, 2020), the state played a leading role in fomenting collaborative governance discourses across the cases, though not necessarily an exclusive role. There were three cases in which the dominant discourse about governance was crafted strongly at the national level: Athens, Dublin and Leicester. All three cities had a heavily centralized mode of governance which defined local relational dynamics more compared with the other cities in this study.
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