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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 24 January 2022

Christopther Ansell, Eva Soerensen and Jacob Torfing

This policy brief argues that that co-creation provides an ideal strategy for mobilizing local actors and fostering innovative public value solutions that can tackle the complex…

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Abstract

This policy brief argues that that co-creation provides an ideal strategy for mobilizing local actors and fostering innovative public value solutions that can tackle the complex problems that inform the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and provide 10 recommendations to those who aim to stimulate collaboration between local actors. It accompanies the publication of a golden open access volume titled Co-creating for Sustainability that the authors of this policy brief also authored.

Details

Emerald Open Research, vol. 1 no. 13
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2631-3952

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 February 2019

Jacob Torfing, Eva Sørensen and Tina Ollgaard Bentzen

The purpose of this paper is to study and assess the content, functioning and impact of institutional reforms aiming to enhance collective and holistic political leadership at the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study and assess the content, functioning and impact of institutional reforms aiming to enhance collective and holistic political leadership at the level of local government.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conduct a comparative case study of two Danish frontrunner municipalities drawing on relevant documents and qualitative interviews with both elected politicians and public administrators.

Findings

The authors found that institutional design is effective in promoting collective and holistic political leadership at the local level, even if no formal design options are available and the municipalities have to invent their own designs. Support both from both councilors and administrators is paramount for successful implementation of local political leadership reforms.

Research limitations/implications

Due to the purposive selection of a limited number of cases, the findings cannot be generalized to the population from which the cases are drawn. However, other municipalities may learn from and become inspired by the positive impact of the new institutional designs on collective and holistic political leadership.

Practical implications

Whereas some institutional political leadership reforms aim to enhance the power of the mayor and other reforms aim to create a cabinet or a committee system, the reforms the authors are studying aim to create a space for local councilors to work together across party and sector lines in creating collective and holistic policy solutions. The study shows that it is crucial that local councilors are involved in cross-boundary agenda setting before developing policies in standing committees and endorsing them in the council assembly.

Social implications

There is a large amount of more or less wicked problems that require the formulation and implementation of innovative policy solutions, which, in turn, call for a clear and determined political leadership. However, local politicians typically suffer from decoupling and tunnel vision. The results show that these problems can be solved through new institutional designs that promote a more collective and holistic political leadership that can take the local community forward.

Originality/value

Few studies have hitherto addressed the need for institutional reforms enabling collective and holistic political leadership through both theoretical and empirical analyses, but that is exactly what the authors try to accomplish.

Details

International Journal of Public Leadership, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4929

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

Abstract

Details

Co-Creation for Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-798-2

Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

This chapter looks at how Goal 17 on partnerships can be a lever of change. It discusses the partnership approach to achieving the SDGs and unravels the key functions of networks…

Abstract

This chapter looks at how Goal 17 on partnerships can be a lever of change. It discusses the partnership approach to achieving the SDGs and unravels the key functions of networks and partnerships, such as knowledge sharing, coordination, and collaborative governance. It carefully explains why we need to shift the focus of the global debate from collaborative governance to the cocreation of public value outcomes. It then provides a schematic account of the different steps in the process of cocreating outcomes, which include initiation, design, implementation, and evaluation. Finally, the chapter identifies the key merits of cocreation and looks its dark side straight in the eye.

Details

Co-Creation for Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-798-2

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 23 February 2022

Jacob Torfing and Tina Øllgaard Bentzen

Denmark is characterised by high levels of trust between citizens and public authorities as well as between public leaders and employees, providing a comparative advantage when it…

Abstract

Denmark is characterised by high levels of trust between citizens and public authorities as well as between public leaders and employees, providing a comparative advantage when it comes to expanding public welfare, enhancing economic performance and handling a crisis like COVID-19. Public governance, however, requires a delicate balance between trust and the legitimate need for control to secure accountability This chapter explains how the high levels of trust in the Danish public sector are wedded to a pragmatic combination of various public governance paradigms, which has produced a ‘hybrid governance system’ balancing the legitimate demand for control with widespread trust in public employees. Traditional Weberian bureaucratic values of regularity, impartiality and expertise are combined with a limited and selective introduction of New Public Management reforms. Simultaneously, a dynamic neo-Weberian state works to satisfy an increasingly demanding citizenry while new platforms for developing collaborative solutions to complex problems are designed and developed at the municipal level. This hybrid governance system produces a virtuous circle of trust sustained by trust-based systems of evaluation, assessment and accountability developed in close dialogue between public managers and employees. The chapter demonstrates how a long-lasting political-administrative culture based on trust and a pragmatic, non-ideological combination of different governance paradigms has generated a positive trust‒public governance feedback loop. Striking the right control‒trust balance remains a continual challenge, however, to avoid governance failures eroding citizen trust in the public sector and to safeguard public values of transparency, accountability and performance.

Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

This concluding chapter summarizes the critical insights that changemakers ought to consider in their attempt to lead and manage cocreation processes and enhance their impact. The…

Abstract

This concluding chapter summarizes the critical insights that changemakers ought to consider in their attempt to lead and manage cocreation processes and enhance their impact. The chapter also addresses three crucial challenges to the advent of a sustainable future: the need to rethink the assumptions of mainstream economics, the need to secure political stability in times of rapid societal change; and the demand for the deepening democracy. Finally, the chapter argues that local efforts to build a sustainable future will only succeed if key economic, political, and democratic challenges are effectively dealt with at the global and national levels.

Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

This chapter argues that failure to secure accountability can be costly because it raises doubts about the fairness, salience, and impact of cocreation. Cocreation must establish…

Abstract

This chapter argues that failure to secure accountability can be costly because it raises doubts about the fairness, salience, and impact of cocreation. Cocreation must establish accountability with respect to four different audiences: sponsors, relevant stakeholders, affected citizens, and the general public. The chapter discusses the challenges of trying to solely hold cocreation networks and partnerships accountable based on formal accountability mechanisms. It argues that these formal mechanisms must be supplemented with social and more informal strategies of accountability. Finally, the chapter considers how changemakers can strengthen social and informal accountability in and around cocreating networks and partnerships.

Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

This chapter draws out lessons regarding how the diagnosis of urgent problems, the formation of ambitious and visionary goals, and the participation of stakeholders with critical…

Abstract

This chapter draws out lessons regarding how the diagnosis of urgent problems, the formation of ambitious and visionary goals, and the participation of stakeholders with critical innovation assets stimulate the cocreation of innovative solutions that promote the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals), and how changemakers can lead and manage cocreated innovation processes. It considers the initiation of innovation processes and the design and testing of innovative solutions as well as the upscaling and diffusion of new successful products, processes and organizational forms. Finally, it identifies several common pitfalls that are important for changemakers to avoid, including an assumption of the necessity for heroic leadership, failure to include relevant actors, overly strict and detailed plans and procedures, and inability to integrate newcomers.

Details

Co-Creation for Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-798-2

Keywords

Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

This chapter argues that despite the horizontal and self-organizing character of cocreation processes, leadership is essential for initiating and facilitating collaboration and…

Abstract

This chapter argues that despite the horizontal and self-organizing character of cocreation processes, leadership is essential for initiating and facilitating collaboration and securing the production of effective SDG solutions. Leadership is defined as a two-way street between leaders who guide their followers and enable them to reach their goals and followers who provide valuable input to leaders in a bottom-up process. Five crucial leadership functions are identified and the role of power in leadership is discussed. The chapter also considers the particular strategies for leading cocreation networks and partnerships and the skills and competencies necessary for pursuing these strategies. Finally, the chapter describes the importance of building leadership capacity through the recruitment of leadership teams.

Details

Co-Creation for Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-798-2

Keywords

Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2022

Christopher Ansell, Eva Sørensen and Jacob Torfing

This chapter looks at the crucial role that local action plays in achieving the SDGs. It begins by revisiting the transition from the Millennium Development Goals to the

Abstract

This chapter looks at the crucial role that local action plays in achieving the SDGs. It begins by revisiting the transition from the Millennium Development Goals to the Sustainable Development Goals and ponders the reasons why we should have faith in the prospect for successful goal attainment. Next, it demonstrates the importance of local responses to global problems and challenges targeted by the SDGs and discusses the motivation of local actors to contribute to the changes that need to be made in order to generate inclusive prosperity while protecting the planet. Finally, the chapter identifies some of the key barriers to local action and reflects on how we broaden the scope and improve the conditions for local people and organizations to initiate and drive change.

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