noun / Gov·ern·ance / ˈɡəvərnəns

The process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented.


Good Governance” — Governance characterized by transparent, enlightened and accountable policy-making, a professional bureaucracy dedicated to serving the public good, the rule of law, and strong societal participation.


Poor Governance” — Governance characterized by arbitrary and opaque policy-making, unaccountable elected officials and unprofessional bureaucracies, unjust and unrestrained legal systems, abuse of executive power, widespread corruption, and a unengaged citizenry.


“While democracy tends to refer to the legitimacy of government, good governance refers to the effectiveness of government. . . .  Neither democracy nor good governance is sustainable without the other.”†

†C. Santos, Good Governance and Aid Effectiveness: The World Bank and Conditionality, The Georgetown Public Policy Review, Volume 7 Number 1 Fall 2001, pp.1-22 at 2.