Understanding the impact of democratic logics on participatory resource decision-making in New Zealand

Type of content
Journal Article
Thesis discipline
Degree name
Informa UK Limited
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Winstanley A
Ahuriri-Driscoll A
Hepi M
Baker V
Foote J

© 2016 ESR. This paper claims that participatory approaches to water resource management in New Zealand are highly influenced by how institutional and community actors understand and practise democracy, including indigenous Māori rights under the Treaty of Waitangi. Drawing on case study analysis from a six-year research programme in which the aim was to evaluate existing and new methods for participatory decision-making, we highlight how different but co-existing democratic beliefs and practices, referred to as democratic logics can shape relationships between governance/decision-making bodies and affected communities. One particular case is examined in detail to illustrate how the various “logics” were strengthened, extended and challenged through participatory research methodologies. Our key message is that revealing and articulating existing democratic logics for participation can help promote and facilitate new participatory approaches, as well as increase robustness and community buy-in to local government decision-making.

Winstanley A, Ahuriri-Driscoll A, Hepi M, Baker V, Foote J (2016). Understanding the impact of democratic logics on participatory resource decision-making in New Zealand. Local Environment. 21(10). 1171-1184.
Participatory decisionmaking, water resource management, democracy, institutional logics, action research, grounded theory
Ngā upoko tukutuku/Māori subject headings
ANZSRC fields of research
Fields of Research::41 - Environmental sciences::4104 - Environmental management::410406 - Natural resource management
Fields of Research::44 - Human society::4408 - Political science::440809 - New Zealand government and politics
Fields of Research::44 - Human society::4407 - Policy and administration::440704 - Environment policy
Fields of Research::44 - Human society::4408 - Political science::440805 - Environmental politics