Time period: 2015-2018
Researchers: Charlotta Söderberg and Annica Sandström
How can the different institutional designs for multi-level governance visible in contemporary environmental management be described; and how do these different multi-level governance designs affect governance outcome in terms of policy learning, policy coherence and policy consent - key factors for adaptive, effective and legitimate governance? These critical questions are addressed in this project trough a comparative analysis of water- and wildlife management in Sweden. Present government-governance typologies are too broad to separate different multi-level governance designs. In this project, we therefore develop and test a refined conceptual framework for how to disentangle the defining features of different multi-level governance designs. Moreover, we propose and test three theory-derived hypotheses on the relation between governance design and governance outcome. We combine qualitative text analysis, a web-survey, and semi-structured interviews with key actors within the Swedish systems for water- and wildlife management. The study provides significant insights to the field of multi-level governance and institutional design by enhancing our theoretical understanding of how to disentangle different multi-level governance designs, and by examining the relation between different designs and governance outcome. The project also provides important empirical knowledge for policymakers on how to design multi-level systems to optimize environmental governance outcomes.