5Citizens as Co-Producers of Personal Social Services in Sweden

Toward a Paradigm of Democratic Participation

A. Background: Democratic Governance

The concept of governance gained extensive attention recently, becoming a buzzword in the social sciences. It is used in a wide array of contexts with widely divergent meanings. Van Kersbergen and van Waarden (2004) surveyed the literature and identified no fewer than nine different definitions of the concept; while Hirst (2002) attributed it five different meanings or contexts. They include economic development, international institutions and regimes, corporate governance, private provision of public services in the wake of New Public Management and new practices for coordinating activities through ...

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