Bridging state and civil society at the "Grassroots": networks, collaboration and local governance in two rural Thai communities

Taveekan, T 2013, Bridging state and civil society at the "Grassroots": networks, collaboration and local governance in two rural Thai communities, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Global, Urban and Social Studies, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Bridging state and civil society at the "Grassroots": networks, collaboration and local governance in two rural Thai communities
Author(s) Taveekan, T
Year 2013
Abstract The thesis examines the impact of changing governance concepts and approaches on the interaction between public authorities and civil society actors within the environmental policy domain at the local community in Thailand. More specifically, it considers the nature of engagements between state agencies and community that take place within a governance context. Governance is an issue of increasing concern at all levels internationally and across a wide range of disciplines. This concern is associated with the changing social fabric of networks responding to complexity of problems in an increasingly globalised world. The search for solutions for dealing with ‘wicked problems’ has led to new frontiers and new ways of working aimed at engaging civil society in governance mechanisms. New meaning and approaches of governance have evolved and have been employed all around the world including Thailand since the beginning of the globalisation era in the last 1990s. However, there is a little known about those effects of those changes in Thailand as the mode of governance has progressively shifted from hierarchy to market and then network governance. Based on that history of change, this thesis explores the significance of changing governance approaches in the context of local communities in Thailand with the attempt to using governance lenses to observe the ‘reality’. This thesis examines the evolving management of local affairs from the broad view at the national level using historical contextual approach to understand the determination of change that have affected local administration globally and nationally. Next, the research furthers the investigation by employing ethnographical case study at the community level. The survey, interview and participation observation techniques have been used to generate the data. The research data findings have been treated with interpretative methods informed by ground theory, which allowed key themes to emerge. Such emerging themes had been discussed and synthesized within the light of previous literature. The research findings reveal the evolution of Thai local administration has gradually shifted from an absolute hierarchical mode of governance toward ‘modern’ local governance involving network forms of collaboration in environmental policy. This movement represents a move that is characterized by ‘less government’ and ‘more governance’. Finally, it proposes a ‘Collaborative Local Governance’ framework that acknowledges the significance of localised conditions to consider appropriate governance network arrangements in local communities.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Global, Urban and Social Studies
Keyword(s) state and civil society relations
local governance
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Created: Fri, 27 Jun 2014, 13:00:43 EST by Lynne Johns
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