Decision-making and networked public governance: Making decisions in regulatory networks

Saturday, 6 April 2013: 8:50 AM
Ahmed Badran, PhD , Exeter University, Exeter, England
A major concern of this paper is to find out how conflicts and disagreement between actors involved in the decision-making processes can be directed in a way that leads to mutual agreements, stronger relationships, and better decisions. The paper argues that in regulatory networks, the image of the decision-maker who is seen as an all-knowing, tough, single-minded, is no longer acceptable. This image has been replaced by another in which regulators as decision-makers are more likely to follow a more cooperative, participative, and interactive style for making decisions. In this sense, regulators try to pool their knowledge and expertise and encourage other actors to do the same in order to find a solution that achieves mutual benefits to all involved. The paper starts with a discussion of the types and nature of policy problems in general and regulatory problems in particular. The differences between the rational model and the network approach for decision-making are illustrated in the second section. In the third and the fourth sections the dynamics of decision-making and problem-solving in networks and the expected role of regulators are covered. The final section presents strategies for regulatory intervention.