Elaborating global private meta-governance: An inventory in the realm of voluntary sustainability standards. Derkx, B. and Glasbergen, P. Global Environmental Change, 27:41--50, July, 2014.
Elaborating global private meta-governance: An inventory in the realm of voluntary sustainability standards [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
Voluntary sustainability standards and certification schemes are expanding in a variety of economic sectors. The relatively uncoordinated coexistence of multiple competing schemes has created a very fragmented governance system. One way to analytically approach the search for solutions to this fragmentation is grasped with the relatively new concept of meta-governance. Meta-governance as we understand it draws attention to the management of plurality with the aim to induce more coherence in the governance of an issue area. In political science, meta-governance has mainly been attributed to governmental authorities. However, over the past decade, a number of voluntary standards setters have – with or without the support of UN agencies – started to address the need for meta-governance as well. Their efforts generally entail the coming together of a number of frontrunner schemes and the organizations backing them to jointly address the challenges their self-created regulatory systems face and produce greater coherence among their efforts. This paper studies private meta-governance attempts in the fields of fair labor (JO-IN), sustainable tourism (GSTC), and organic agriculture (ITF), as well as a meta-governance initiative that aims to improve the credibility of private standards as governance mechanisms (ISEAL Alliance). Based on document analysis and interviews we analyze how these meta-governance initiatives have given shape to their aspirations, how successful their efforts have been in effecting change, and what determining factors are. From the empirical research, we distil some more general lessons and insights about the politics and practice of private meta-governance.
@article{derkx_elaborating_2014,
	title = {Elaborating global private meta-governance: {An} inventory in the realm of voluntary sustainability standards},
	volume = {27},
	issn = {0959-3780},
	shorttitle = {Elaborating global private meta-governance},
	url = {http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S095937801400082X},
	doi = {10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2014.04.016},
	abstract = {Voluntary sustainability standards and certification schemes are expanding in a variety of economic sectors. The relatively uncoordinated coexistence of multiple competing schemes has created a very fragmented governance system. One way to analytically approach the search for solutions to this fragmentation is grasped with the relatively new concept of meta-governance. Meta-governance as we understand it draws attention to the management of plurality with the aim to induce more coherence in the governance of an issue area. In political science, meta-governance has mainly been attributed to governmental authorities. However, over the past decade, a number of voluntary standards setters have – with or without the support of UN agencies – started to address the need for meta-governance as well. Their efforts generally entail the coming together of a number of frontrunner schemes and the organizations backing them to jointly address the challenges their self-created regulatory systems face and produce greater coherence among their efforts. This paper studies private meta-governance attempts in the fields of fair labor (JO-IN), sustainable tourism (GSTC), and organic agriculture (ITF), as well as a meta-governance initiative that aims to improve the credibility of private standards as governance mechanisms (ISEAL Alliance). Based on document analysis and interviews we analyze how these meta-governance initiatives have given shape to their aspirations, how successful their efforts have been in effecting change, and what determining factors are. From the empirical research, we distil some more general lessons and insights about the politics and practice of private meta-governance.},
	urldate = {2014-06-08},
	journal = {Global Environmental Change},
	author = {Derkx, Boudewijn and Glasbergen, Pieter},
	month = jul,
	year = {2014},
	keywords = {Certification, fragmentation, Meta-governance, Sustainability standards, Sustainable development},
	pages = {41--50},
	file = {ScienceDirect Full Text PDF:files/49226/Derkx and Glasbergen - 2014 - Elaborating global private meta-governance An inv.pdf:application/pdf;ScienceDirect Snapshot:files/49227/S095937801400082X.html:text/html}
}
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