Poster Paper: Conceptual Mapping of Collaborative Governance Terminology

Thursday, November 7, 2013
West End Ballroom A (Washington Marriott)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Jenny Biddle, University of North Carolina, Wilmington and Kimberly Richards, American University
The utilization of collaborative governance in environmental policymaking is now being regarded as a new form of governance to better address complex environmental problems that are being increasingly difficult to solve through traditional, top-down governmental problem solving. This research examines a growing body of literature related to collaborative environmental governance, in order to establish a more consistent definition and application of collaboration in environmental policymaking. Past research from scholars in the fields of environmental policy and collaborative analysis have used multiple varying terms that are conceptually similar, often co-citing each other even though they use different terms. This study utilizes data collected from 41 different academic publications related to collaborative governance, from authors in nine academic fields. It specifically analyzes 21 definitions from 17 different authors of terms related to collaborative governance. Through correspondence analyses, we clustered keywords and scholars to determine connections and comparisons across authors, definitions, and academic fields. The results, illustrated through maps and charts, visually allow for us to examine many parallels among both terms and authors; this is due to different authors seeking to theorize on very similar concepts related to collaborative environmental governance. The goals of this study are to bring together varying definitions from authors across academic fields to identify a common vocabulary and work together in order to advance future use of collaborative governance in the environmental policy field.