This presentation looks at new ways of governing. Governance theory has become increasingly popular in understanding global governance, the European Union and national-level politics. This presentation looks at governance as a series of techniques and measures designed to improve individual and institutional performance, enhance the role of markets and encourage responsible conduct. However, it is argued that we cannot understand these new forms of governance simply by looking at the mechanisms of governance themselves. Rather, governance needs to be set in a wider and deeper context that considers underlying social relations, the role of markets and the role of states. Ironically, these are the very things that governance theories often ignore or dismiss as no longer significant. By putting governance in its proper place, we can better understand its operation, but also its gaps, tensions and failings.
Jonathan Joseph is Reader in Politics and International Relations at the University of Kent at Canterbury. His research interests span social theory, IR theory and philosophy of social science. His books include Hegemony: A Realist Analysis (Routledge 2002), Scientific Realism and International Relations (edited with Colin Wight, Palgrave 2010) and most recently The Social in the Global: Social Theory, Governmentality and Global Politics (Cambridge 2012).