How well do participatory governance arrangements serve political leadership?
Peer reviewed, Journal article
MetadataShow full item record
Participatory governance arrangements are assumed to strengthen elected representatives' capacity for political leadership. This study argues that the relationship between participatory arrangements and perceived political leadership depends on the design of the participatory arrangements. Drawing on a survey to local councilors in Norway, we found that sharing power with citizens through interactive governance arrangements was associated with lower perceived capacity for political leadership than giving power away through distributive arrangements. Case studies exploring how politicians experienced interactive and distributive participatory arrangements showed that politicians were especially ambivalent about interactive arrangements that were perceived to disrupt their traditional ways of doing political leadership. Notably, interactive arrangements were believed to decrease leadership capacity because politicians remained responsible for matters over which they no longer had full control, challenging their ability to stay accountable to the voters.How well do participatory governance arrangements serve political leadership?