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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Linking Network Structure to Collaborative Governance

  • Author(s): Ulibarri, Nicola
  • Scott, Tyler A
  • et al.

© The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Inc. All rights reserved. How do social networks differ between highly collaborative and less collaborative forms of governance? Drawing on a prior study that characterized the level of collaboration for three federal hydropower relicensing processes, we develop exponential random graph models of meeting attendance and participation networks. We find that the highly collaborative relicensing process had lower overall density and a propensity for relatively fewer and stronger interactions. Reciprocity is highest in the high-collaboration process, indicating that it is characterized by mutual interactions. In the low-collaboration process, patterns of connections between any three members of the network displayed a more unidirectional structure, suggesting asymmetrical interactions between active versus passive members of the network. By linking network structure to collaborative dynamics, this study helps elaborate potential mechanisms of successful collaboration.

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