Governing the governors: the global metagovernance of fair trade and sustainable forestry production
Murphy-Gregory, H and Gale, F, Governing the governors: the global metagovernance of fair trade and sustainable forestry production, Politics & Policy, 47, (3) pp. 569-597. ISSN 1747-1346 (2019) [Refereed Article]
To promote environmentally sustainable corporate behavior, a complex system of global private governance operates where civil society groups play dominant roles. We argue that the concept of "metagovernance" developed in the public administration literature helps scholars and practitioners make sense of the constellation of actors, structures, and processes that have emerged in the field of global private governance. This article advances the metagovernance research agenda by providing a comparative application of the concept to two global private governance schemes: the fair trade and sustainable forest product certification systems. We examine the key organizations, arrangements, and relationships that constitute these systems to demonstrate that metagovernance in this sphere is produced heterarchically: multiple organizations within global private governance schemes are mutually responsible for their own coordination. We argue that employing metagovernance as an analytical tool enables the identification and appraisal of the strengths and weaknesses of complex systems for "the governance of governance" from a holistic perspective.
metagovernance, global private governance, fair trade, forestry, certification, labeling, civil society organizations, global standards, forest stewardship council, fairtrade international