Browsing by Author "Muller, Kobus"
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- ItemAssessing cooperative environmental governance systems : the cases of the Kogelberg Biosphere reserve and the Olifants-Doorn catchment Management Agency(Unisa Press, 2008) Muller, KobusAgainst a background of institutional fragmentation and lack of coordination among the respective role players, the notion of co-management of natural resources has emerged in many countries around the world as the most promising institutional prospect for resolving resource conflicts and building partnerships in conservation and management between local actors and government authorities. In South Africa, like elsewhere, the fragmentation and lack of coordination among the various executing agencies represent a significant hurdle and a barrier to successfully integrated environmental governance. Following international trends, and supported by the constitutional vision of cooperative governance and the transformation agenda of the government – which created an openness to new and alternative service-delivery mechanisms – innovative new networked regional and community-based natural resource governance systems emerged in the late 1990s. These new forms of cooperative management of natural resources, and in particular the role of networks and partnerships, have led to a new and growing general interest in evaluating cooperative environmental governance systems. Following a broadly institutionalist approach, which is useful for studying situations of governance where policy formulation and implementation involve a wide range of actors, a diagnostic tool was developed to facilitate opportunities for organisational and social learning. The perceived usefulness of having such a tool was put to the test by applying it to two case studies in the Western Cape, namely the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve and the Olifants-Doorn Catchment Management Agency. In this article the characteristics of two evolving environmental governance systems are mapped, using the framework to assess and refine its usefulness in contributing to our knowledge and understanding of building social capital and institutional capacity in decentralised and networked governance settings.
- ItemBeyond the limits : organisational innovation in collaborative environmental governance - the South African experience(Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch, 2008-11) Muller, KobusThe fragmented, incoherent and complex nature of modern society necessitated governments to find alternative ways and adopt new roles to cope with ‘the limits to governance’ which threaten to overwhelm public action. It is in this context that the trend towards decentralised units that are self-regulated and diverse, which can act locally and freed from much of the standardising constraints characteristic of hierarchical government, must be viewed and where managers act as brokers leveraging resources held by third parties in stead of controlling in-house resources. In the environmental field organisational innovation flourished and collaborative environmental management has become the leading paradigm for addressing complex environmental issues throughout the world. South Africa has followed international trends with new collaboratives emerging at regional or local level over the last decade. Based on differences in process and form, five examples have been selected to illustrate some of the South African experiences in organisational innovation and experimentation with new governance forms. The growing interest in collaboration has led to the development of assessment tools that could be applied to study the evolving models. An overview is given of what has been learned so far as well as the prospects and challenges for the future. These evolving models offer an exciting window of opportunity for social and organisational learning and can make an important contribution to innovation in management in South Africa.
- ItemCreating public value through collaborative environmental governance(Administratio Publica, 2010-11) Muller, KobusThat collaborative management has become the central reality of public problem solving is nowhere better illustrated than in the field of environmental governance. Institutional innovations like collaborative environmental management or co-management have flourished and have the leading paradigm for addressing complex environmental issues throughout the world. South Africa has followed international trends with new collaboratives emerging at regional or local level over the last decade. These innovations are necessitated by the need for governments to find alternative ways to add to public value and adopt new roles to cope with ‘the limits to governance’ which threaten to overwhelm public action. It is in this context that the trend towards decentralised units that are selfregulated and diverse, which can act locally and are freed from many of the standardising constraints characteristic of hierarchical government, must be viewed and in which public leaders act as brokers leveraging resources held by third parties instead of controlling in-house resources. It is generally accepted that co-management entails a process and ultimately consensus building among all stakeholders as partners to develop relationships and knowledge which will enable them to generate sustainable solutions to new challenges. This article reflects on the question of whether the involvement of new actors in public decision-making improves the outcomes by creating shared responsibility, improving transparency, better targeting collaborative resource management to community needs and ultimately adding to the creation of public value. The challenges of public leadership in these processes will be highlighted as one of the critical key success factors in achieving these desired outcomes.
- ItemEnhancing the adaptive capacity of collaboratives through education and learning in South Africa(African Consortium of Public Administration, 2014-12) Muller, Kobus; Stellenbosch University. Department of Economic and Management Sciences. School of Public Leadership.ABSTRACT: It is clear that the environmental issues facing us today are prime manifestations of complex or “wicked” public problems and, as such, natural resource governance has to be approached from a complexity science perspective. The rise of adaptive co-management as an approach to ecosystem management and the emergence of innovative and novel collaborative governance models are manifestations of this trend. What is not so clear, however, is how our understanding of complex adaptive systems, resilience thinking, adaptive management and governance should be translated in terms of the role institutions of higher learning must play in their teaching, research and community interaction endeavours. The questions this article wants to explore are: How can the adaptive capacity of socio-ecological systems be enhanced through education and learning, and what is (or should be) the role of institutions of higher learning in this regard? The opportunities and challenges for universities are reflected upon against the background of the emergence of collaborative environmental governance models in the Western Cape Province.
- ItemMulti-stakeholder processes towards establishing water management agencies in South Africa(Administratio Publica, 2009-01) Muller, Kobus; Enright, WillieThe multi-stakeholder approach reflects some of the most frequently and fervently debated issues in discussions on governance, democracy, equity and justice in recent years. The term multi-stakeholder is used to include all role-players, government institutions, stakeholders, clients, non-governmental organisations and community based organisations. It is generally accepted that sustainable development requires a process and ultimately consensus-building among all stakeholders as partners to build relationships and knowledge that will enable them to develop sustainable solutions to new challenges. It is against this background that the processes leading up to the establishment of new decentralised regional water management institutions in South Africa is described and analysed. The process in the Olifants-Doorn Water Management Area to draft the required proposal for the establishment of a catchment management agency is used as a case study (hereafter referred to as the Olifants-Doorn process). The authors argue that the Olifants-Doorn process up to the formal establishment of the Olifants-Doorn Catchment Management Agency (CMA) is a considerable success story evaluated against the principles of good governance. This is evaluated especially in terms of improving stakeholder equality through capacity building, Administratio Publica | Vol 17 No 1 January 2009 113 INTRODUCTION It is generally accepted that sustainable development requires a process and ultimately consensus-building among all stakeholders inclusive of all roleplayers, government institutions, stakeholders, clients, non-governmental organisations and community based organisations as partners who together define the problems, design possible solutions, collaborate to implement them, obtain specific products, and monitor and evaluate the outcome. Through such activities stakeholders can build relationships and knowledge that will enable them to develop sustainable solutions to new challenges (Hemmati 2002:40). In fact, the multi-stakeholder approach reflects some of the most frequently and fervently debated issues in discussions on governance, democracy, equity and justice in recent years. The aim of the research was to analyse the multi-stakeholder processes leading up to the emergence of new decentralised environmental governance systems for water resources management in South Africa utilising a ‘good governance’ perspective. For this purpose ‘public governance’ is defined as the way in which stakeholders interact with each other in order to influence the outcome of policies and ‘good governance’ as the implementation by multiple stakeholders of quality of life improvements through agreed principles and processes of working together (Governance International 2006). In this article the focus firstly fall on the philosophical and theoretical underpinnings of the emergence of new collaborative models for environmental governance through multi-stakeholder processes; secondly, the scene is set for discussing the particular case study of the Olifants-Doorn process which forms the focus of this article by contextualising the historical background, policy framework and institutional landscape for water resource management in South Africa; thirdly, the multi-stakeholder process leading towards the establishment of the Olifants-Doorn Catchment Management Agency will be described; and achieving representation, the exchange of information, time, human and financial resources committed to the process, and building consensus, while allowing the process to progress at its own pace. Although the enabling constitutional and sectoral policy frameworks facilitate good governance practices and behaviour, the key success factor was largely the professional commitment of the public administration technocrats who are responsible for activating, orchestrating and modulating the process.
- ItemOperationalising performance management in local government : the use of the balanced scorecard(AOSIS, 2018) Ndevu, Zwelinzima J.; Muller, KobusOrientation: Local government forms that part of the public sector closest to citizens and therefore indispensable in its role of providing essential goods and services and developing the local area. Local government has the authority and functions necessary to provide services for the maintenance and promotion of the well-being of all people within their area and should provide access to basic services such as water, electricity and health care. Research purpose: This study examines performance management as a tool in local government effective provision service delivery. The critical question addressed in this paper was how the balanced scorecard (BSC) can be used to improve performance in the context of local government and assist in eradicating the current challenges of lack of quality services, poverty and infrastructure development. Motivation for the study: The need for continuous improvement in service delivery at local government compounded by high levels of service delivery protest requires regular review of performance management system. Research approach: To understand the current context and challenges facing local government, the applicable legislative framework including the Constitution, white paper and the National Development Plans were perused to better understand the legal environment in which local government operates. A literature review was undertaken to evaluate theory on organisational effectiveness. Semi-structured interviews were used to solicit expert opinions. Main findings/managerial implications: The BSC approach emerged as the preferred tool because the method offered the authors the opportunity to review non-financial and financial factors to arrive at a balanced conclusion. A BSC tool was developed and applied to the Joe Gqabi District Municipality as a case study. Practical implications: The BSC as a performance management tool enables organisations to clarify their vision and strategy and translate them into goal or actions. Contribution/value-add: The research findings conclude that there was acknowledgement of the importance of performance measurement instruments in the municipality, yet the municipality still experienced challenges caused by the performance review process not being transparent and not communicated to all stakeholders.
- ItemOrganisational innovation : some emerging environmental governance models in South Africa(Unisa Press, 2007) Muller, KobusIn South Africa, like elsewhere in the world, the complexities of natural re- source management and the postmodern reality of a fragmented institutional landscape complicate efforts to develop effective institutions for environmental governance. The transformation of South African society in general and, specifically, the transformation of processes and the institutional landscape following the transition to democracy opened a window of opportunity and a willingness on the part of the various role players to experiment with novel and innovative organisational forms and arrangements. In line with the 1992 Rio Earth Summit thinking, the idea that a decentralised set of networks and partnerships holds the most promising institutional prospect for the future qualified with the argument that the transformation imperatives might sometimes necessitate central guidance is generally accepted as a point of departure. The emergence of regional and community-based natural resource management is new in the South African context. Working for Water (WfW), one of the government's flagship programmes, was the first to be initiated in 1995. The establishment of the first biosphere reserve dates back to 1998, while the first of the water catchment management agencies was created seven years after it was legislatively mandated in 1998. Some other initiatives, such as Cape Action for People and the Environment (CAPE) and Working on Fire Programme were initiated in 2000 and 2003 respectively. Because these structures are still evolving, they offer a unique opportunity to study and compare the evolution of these systems for the purposes of both organisational and social learning. Although it is perhaps too early to draw definitive conclusions on the success of these models, some pointers to guide future research may be derived from the initial observations of the emerging features of the selected models and processes.
- ItemSocial capital and collaborative environmental governance(The African Consortium of Public Administration (ACPA), 2013-06) Muller, KobusTo cope with the increasing complexities of environmental challenges, innovative models of governance that are capable of greater fl exibility, speed and adaptability have emerged. Following international trends, new collaborative partnerships varying greatly in form and purpose have developed over the last 15 years. The Western Cape Province, world renowned for the Cape Floristic Region and one of the world’s 25 most threatened biodiversity hotspots, has also experienced a proliferation of ‘collaboratives’. In an effort to contribute to the knowledge and understanding of building social capital and institutional capacity in these types of governance settings, this article focuses on the evolution of one of the more successful of these new forms – the Cape West Coast Biosphere Reserve – from an organisational learning perspective before refl ecting on the question of whether the concepts of social capital and organisational learning are useful to explain its apparent success. Although the fi ndings are inconclusive, a suffi cient number of pointers have emerged from the exploration of the case study to warrant further research on the role of social learning and social capital as explanations of why particular collaboratives seem to be more successful in achieving desirable outcomes than others.
- ItemThink globally, act locally : policy implications of the climate change regime(Administratio Publica, 2009-05) White, Richard; Muller, KobusClimate change with its potential to disrupt all facets of life on earth is arguably the greatest environmental threat that humankind has faced to date. The debates on the best methods and means of dealing with the threat are occupying the agendas of diverse actors in the international, national and local arenas. In an effort to address the effects of climate change, governments and policy-makers attempt to translate the results of this vibrant debate into meaningful policy at home. This article attempts to describe this journey from debate through policy into action, taking the complexities of policy environment into account. At the outset the largely divided international climate change regime endorses the contradictory stance of energy-intensive developing nations such as South Africa and inhibits the fostering of a meaningful climate change policy environment at a national level. The policy context with regard to climate change in South Africa is analysed and the salient causes of the troubled policy environment, aside from those commonly associated with developing nations, are identified as largely administrative. Finally, the policy environment in South Africa is examined at local level and, while local governments enjoy more autonomy under the new dispensation, the administrative fragmentation experienced at a national level permeates down to the local sphere, with the EThekwini Municipality serving as a case in point.
- ItemUse of scorecards in measuring the governance of public special schools(ASSADPAM, 2013-03) Jonas, Patrick T.; Muller, KobusConflicts and dis-functionality in public schools is frequently the root of poor school performance and learner outcomes. This often is a direct result of poor school governance. Studies have previously identified a number of factors affecting the standard of school governance. On of these is absence of "effective monitoring and evaluation" system for school governance. The current approach of Whole School Evaluation which incorporates the Integrated Quality Management System (IQMS) unfortunately does not possess adequately measurement for school governance to identify specific areas of failure. The authors have designed a measurement instrument to address this particular gap in management of public schools. This is in the form of a balanced scorecard based on Kaplan and Norton (1996) but only developed specifically for measuring the public, educational and non-profit sector. A number of school governance performance areas based on the regulatory frameworks like th South African Schools Act (Act 84 of 1996) have been linked to specific indicators and measures and streamlined towards meeting key targets for achieving satisfactory school outcomes.