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As Australian cities face uncertain water futures, what insights can the history of Aboriginal and settler relationships with water yield? Residents have come to expect reliable, safe, and cheap water, but natural limits and the costs of maintaining and expanding water networks are at odds with forms and cultures of urban water use. Cities in a Sunburnt Country is the first comparative study of the provision, use, and social impact of water and water infrastructure in Australia's five largest cities. Drawing on environmental, urban, and economic history, this co-authored book challenges widely held assumptions, both in Australia and around the world, about water management, consumption, and sustainability. From the 'living water' of Aboriginal cultures to the rise of networked water infrastructure, the book invites us to take a long view of how water has shaped our cities, and how urban water systems and cultures might weather a warming world.
White settlers domesticated water by shaping and regulating natural water features into systems of dams, piped networks, and waste disposal facilities. Clean water is a common resource when there is no restriction on its use, and each use of the resource makes less available to others. Overuse of common water resources was an early feature of the five cities, and effective solutions were the product of democratic institutions that empowered citizens to take collective action and express demands for improved infrastructure. In Sydney, Melbourne, and Adelaide, sanitary reform through investment in networked water infrastructure in response to the threat of cholera was underway by the mid-nineteenth century; the development of effective sewerage was delayed by the costs of extension across large metropolitan areas and the fragmentation of political authority between local councils. The smaller cities, Brisbane and Perth, were slower to invest, and water supplies continued to be unreliable and subject to pollution from cesspits. By the start of the twentieth century, variations in water infrastructure systems reflected the path-dependent nature of earlier solutions, which would constrain the options available to future decision makers.
In chapter 3, I present the concept of “democratic dissonance,” which plays a significant role in the book. By this concept, I refer to the rupture between political practices and our expectations of them, a gap produced by institutions erected on the basis of assumptions about democracy and society that can no longer be sustained. In the chapter I maintain that the conception of democracy upon which the constitutional institutions were built was “restricted” (i.e., distrust towards majority rule and citizens’ participation in politics) and that the societies of those times were politically “contained” (i.e., in terms of restrictions on political rights). In this chapter, I suggest that such institutional legacy tends to create serious political problems when same institutions are directed to govern, in our time, a completely different social base, one marked by the conviction that public policies must be in line with our fundamental political claims and that our public life must be guided by our collective decisions.
In the final chapter, I consider how the 2011 Arab uprisings challenged the strategies adopted by the United States and regimes in Egypt and Morocco. I examine shifting aid strategies from the United States and the response from former regime elites and emergent political actors. Drawing from interviews with diplomats and activists involved in transitional support and unreleased data, I consider how the ideas, institutions, and interests that supported a particular form of democracy aid for twenty-five years adjusted with the promise of political change. The chapter concludes with a discussion on the challenges these changes now pose for activists and emerging political actors in the region as well as policymakers in the United States and those embedded within the democracy bureaucracy in Washington, DC. The chapter’s final section revisits the questions raised at the outset of the book and discusses possible mechanisms for enhancing the effectiveness of democracy aid programs.
This article explores the politics of policy change by focusing on agenda setting through the lens of the Multiple Streams Approach (MSA), which has been travelling to ever-larger geographies. We aim to produce signposts for future case studies of policy change by bringing together insights from MSA and New Institutionalism. We ask: Which institutions should we focus on when studying agenda-setting politics in different geographies? How do these institutions shape MSA’s structural elements – problem stream, policy stream, political stream, policy windows, and policy entrepreneur? In answering these questions, we hope to weave not only formal but also informal institutions into MSA’s backbone more tightly. We bring together diverse case studies that are sufficiently abstract and whose findings travel easily across other institutional contexts. We revisit the structural elements of MSA and illustrate how key formal and informal rules structure the politics in these structural elements.
Some conceptions of the role of philosophers in climate change focus mainly on theoretical progress in philosophy, or on philosophers as individual citizens. Against these views, I defend a skill view: philosophers should use our characteristic skills as philosophers to combat climate change by integrating it into our teaching, research, service, and community engagement. A focus on theoretical progress, citizenship, expertise, virtue, ability, social role, or power, rather than on skill, can allow for some of these contributions. But the skill view, I argue, uniquely captures the breadth of philosophers’ role in climate change; promises to make us more effective in practice; and offers a compelling way to overcome our own lingering climate denial by integrating climate change into all aspects of philosophical activity.
When visited by the British trade mission led by Lord George Macartney, who aimed to show off the best of Western trade and technology, the Qianlong Emperor of Qing China was known to have famously replied in 1792, “Our Celestial Empire possesses all things in prolific abundance and lacks no product within its borders. There is therefore no need to import the manufactures of outside barbarians in exchange for our own produce.” Qianlong’s statement came at the height of Qing’s glory, overseeing a remarkable tripling of population and a doubling of territory between the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries. No single political entity at the time achieved such size in both geography and population under such stability and durability.
Transnational counter-terrorism is a crowded field dominated by closed institutions. They include formal international organisations, informal international or multilateral institutions, hybrid entities, private actors, and regional organisations. National authorities and states are also part of this transnational milieu, implicated as members of international organisations and institutions, as founders and funders, as co-ordinators, and as implementers. This chapter argues that consideration of institutions is critical to achieving insight into the dynamics of transnational counter-terrorism, and in particular to understanding the flows of power, norms, and activity across different scales of transnational counter-terrorism, as well as from counter-terrorism to other fields of activity. It then considers the institutions of transnational counter-terrorism: the UN Security Council and its subordinate entities, the General Assembly, the members of the Global Counter-Terrorism Coordination Compact, and informal institutions, organisations, hybrids, private actors, and others that have been drawn into the transnational counter-terrorism order.
How do coalitional dynamics matter for the capacity of states to maintain social inclusion in coordinated models of capitalism? Taking its departure in scholarship emphasizing the influence of employers on the extent of state intervention in post-industrial economies, this paper argues that employer influence depends on which actors they team up with – unions or parties. If unions depend on employers for their organizational influence in a policy field, unions become a strong coalitional partner for employers in weakening demands for inclusiveness from the parliamentary arena. Conversely, if unions have influence independent of any coalition with employers, both unions and employers are likely to team up with political parties aligned with their preferences. This makes the level of inclusion resulting from increased state intervention more fluctuating, depending on who holds government power. A comparative study of reforms of Danish and Austrian vocational education institutions corroborates the empirical purchase of the argument.
The Conclusion begins by summarizing the extensive terrain surveyed in Chapters 2–5 on key concepts of sociality, temporality, (in)efficiency, and power, and aggregates findings on institutional origins, maintenance, and change. It then brings work under different conceptual headings into dialogue and identifies many opportunities for mutual enrichment across schools, traditions, and approaches. With respect to the endogeneity problem, our wide-ranging engagement with a number of literatures show it to present local problems, but not a general threat. Indeed, the four concepts together reveal institutional causal autonomy to be overdetermined across a huge number of conditions. Finally, the chapter holds no expectation of, nor does it advocate the pursuit of, a unified theory of institutions. Instead, it sees ample room for mutually intelligible work relying on a “fish-scale model of omniscience,” with unique specialties exhibiting just enough tangency with other work to sprawl continuously across the social sciences.
The human condition teems with institutions, yet scholarly attention ebbs and flows, and scientific progress proceeds unevenly. After almost half a century of “new institutionalisms,” the time has come to take stock of the vast literature, and to identify existing strengths and new opportunities. Building on dozens of conceptions of institutions from across the social sciences, Theories of Institutions defines them as “intertemporal social arrangements that shape human relations in support of particular values.” By definition, institutions endure and institutions are intersubjective. But they are also consequential, impacting aggregate human welfare and very often shaping distributional outcomes. Setting up key concepts of temporality, sociality, (in)efficiency, and power, on which the heart of the book focuses, the Introduction also articulates a set of common questions around institutional origins, maintenance, and change to be addressed throughout. Such analysis promises to shed new light on the dual nature of institutions as human constructs and human constraints, and to identify promising avenues for interdisciplinary dialogue.
The attacks of 9/11 kickstarted the development of a pervasive and durable transnational counter-terrorism order. This has evolved into a vast institutional architecture with direct effects on domestic law around the world and a number of impacts on everyday life that are often poorly understood. States found, fund and lead institutions inside and outside the United Nations that develop and consolidate transnational counter-terrorism through hard and soft law, strategies, capacity building and counter-terrorism 'products'. These institutions and laws underpin the expansion of counter-terrorism, so that new fields of activity get drawn into it, and others are securitised through their reframing as counter-terrorism and 'preventing and countering extremism'. Drawing on insights from law, international relations, political science and security studies, this book demonstrates the international, regional, national and personal impacts of this institutional and legal order. Fiona de Londras demonstrates that it is expansionary, rights-limiting and unaccountable.
In the 1970s, Elinor Ostrom and her colleagues found that neighborhood policing works better than metropolitan policing. Though Ostrom articulated design principles for self-governance, the early studies of neighborhood policing did not. In this paper, we articulate the design principles for self-governing policing, which we term Ostrom-Compliant Policing. We then apply this framework to an understudied case: policing on American Indian reservations. Policing in Indian country generally falls into one of three categories – federal policing (by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and Federal Bureau of Investigation), state policing (by municipal and state police departments), and tribal policing (by tribal police departments) – that vary in the degree of centralization. Our main contribution is to show that tribal policing as it is practiced in the United States, which claims to be self-governing, is not Ostrom-Compliant. Thus, our approach offers insight into why high crime remains an ongoing challenge in much of Indian country even when tribes have primary control over policing outcomes. This does not mean centralization is better, or that self-governance of policing does not work. Rather, our research suggests that a greater tribal autonomy over-policing and meta-political changes to federal rules governing criminal jurisdictions is necessary to implement Ostromian policing.
The human condition teems with institutions – intertemporal social arrangements that shape human relations in support of particular values – and the social scientific work developed over the last five decades aimed at understanding them is similarly vast and diverse. This book synthesizes scholarship from across the social sciences, with special focus on political science, sociology, economics, and organizational studies. Drawing out institutions' essentially social and temporal qualities and their varying relationships to efficiency and power, the authors identify more underlying similarity in understandings of institutional origins, maintenance, and change than emerges from overviews from within any given disciplinary tradition. Most importantly, Theories of Institutions identifies dozens of avenues for cross-fertilization, the pursuit of which can help keep this broad and inherently diverse field of study vibrant for future generations of scholars.
An essential feature of the Scientific Revolution was the institutionalization and professionalization of the new science, especially in national societies like the Royal Society of London and the French Académie des Sciences, but also in less formal institutional structures, such as correspondence networks, journals, salons, and private spaces. On the one hand, this provided new spaces and new demographics of knowledge production, especially an increased participation by women. On another, it raised a variety of issues related to socially-embedded epistemology, such the proper means of reporting observations and results, and the grounds for witnessing and testimony. This is an area of research that has rapidly expanded in recent years, as this chapter discusses by focusing on the cases of Johanna Stephens and Émilie Du Châtelet.
In this concluding chapter, we evaluate our framework and reflect on the core questions we set out in the introductory chapter. First, we summarize the main conceptual contributions of our framework and its ability to specify and operationalize the interdependence between institutions and technologies, and its implications for the provision of expected services. The main building blocks of our comprehensive framework comprise the identification of critical functions, the interdependent dimensions of institutions and technologies, and the modalities of their alignment. Second, we reflect on the empirical cases detailed in the second part of the book, in order to learn lessons about what we gained from our framework when dealing with “real world” situations and potential ways that the framework could be improved. Through the variety of cases we selected, these empirical explorations showed the capacity of our framework to identify and analyze characteristics and difficulties proper to the network infrastructures investigated. Finally, we consider how our approach can provide guidance for public policy and private sector initiatives against the background of ongoing transitions in network infrastructures. We explore how the issues of coordination and alignment could be managed by private agents (consumers, firms, and other organizations) as well as public authorities.
The global institutional arrangements that structure contemporary relations between states and other actors have grown beyond past benchmarks of diversity. This institutional diversity accentuates some challenges for contemporary global governance, including how states and global actors strike a balance in the integration of institutions. While in some periods and areas there have been successful efforts to integrate global governance arrangements, a sense has long prevailed among contemporary policy-makers and scholars that global governance has become conspicuously fragmented. Institutional incompatibilities that stem from diverse designs are one reason why the world is thought to be poorly equipped to effectively manage global challenges in the security, trade, finance, health, environmental, and other policy domains, especially when these intersect. This chapter probes the contributions of comparative institutional analysis for explaining past and present institutional diversity as well as answers to why institutional integration remains an elusive goal in contemporary global governance.
In this chapter, we specify the nature of network infrastructures from our alignment perspective. We first pay attention to the expected services that network infrastructures intend to provide: they are the backbones of the economy and deliver services essential to its citizens. We show how the infrastructures and the services they are expected to deliver are embedded in societal values. We then discuss the two dimensions of network infrastructures, the technological and the institutional dimensions, and analyze the characteristic of complementarity that underlies their components. Complementarities require tight coordination. Furthermore, we discuss in this chapter the core of our argument: the modalities providing technological coordination, on the one hand, and institutional coordination, on the other hand, should be well aligned; otherwise, the fulfillment of critical functions is endangered. We need to better understand how network infrastructures operate and under which conditions they can achieve the expected performance. We focus on the interdependencies between the technological and the institutional dimensions; on the critical functions as requirements for the system to provide the expected services; and on the necessity to align the coordination arrangements in both dimensions, in order to fulfill these critical functions. Otherwise, expected services cannot be delivered.
Notwithstanding their specificities, different network infrastructures share a fundamental property: they are embedded in and part of general institutional settings. In this chapter, we focus on this institutional dimension. The main point we make is that institutions are composed of different layers. Identifying and characterizing these layers is both challenging and essential for better understanding the alignment (or misalignment) between institutions and technologies that conditions the performance of specific infrastructures. It is challenging because the usual representations of institutions tend to aggregate and mix or even revise many distinct components such as firms, parliaments, courts, etc. It is essential because it is through the different layers that rights are defined, allocated, implemented, and monitored, thus providing the scaffolding of network infrastructures. A central hypothesis underlying the analysis provided in this chapter is that these infrastructures are socio-technological systems; although subject to physical laws through their technological dimension, their development and usage are framed by human-made rules and rights.