Democratic Administration and Network Governance: Theory and Types of New Governance





Published date: 

June, 2006


Yun-Tung Tsai


This study intends to explore the relationship between democratic administration and network governance, and to utilize “units of analysis” to compare and contrast the types of the implications of network governance in four countries including America, Britain, Germany, and the Netherlands. The main argument is that the theory of network governance may serve as a bridge between democracy and efficiency, which the field of public administration is in a dilemma as to pursue the both of goals in the same time. Moreover, reflections on both market failure and bureaucracy failure reveal that network theory, characterized as self-governance, resources interdependent, building trust and consensus, may become a useful conceptual framework of public governance under which government “co-steer” public policy along with other societal institutions. Nevertheless, as the modes of public governance evolve, each model of bureaucracy, market, and networks is one of institutions available for democratic administration, and none of which could be dominant in the society as a whole.