T09P19 - Good Governance in Asia

Topic : Governance, Policy networks and Multi-level Governance

Chair : Charles Chao Rong Phua - cr.phua@u.nus.edu

Second Chair : Kidjie Ian Saguin - kidjie_saguin@u.nus.edu

Third Chair : Maitreyee Mukherjee - moitrebagchi@gmail.com

General Objectives, Research Questions and Scientific Relevance

Call for papers

Session 1

Wednesday, June 28th 14:00 to 16:00 (Block B 3 - 7 )


Maitreyee Mukherjee - moitrebagchi@gmail.com - Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, NUS - Singapore

Kidjie Ian Saguin - kidjie_saguin@u.nus.edu - Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, NUS - Singapore


What Does “Good Governance” Mean? An Analysis of Higher Education Reform and Policy Instruments in Taiwan

Chuo-Chun Hsieh - hsieh.cc@mail.ndhu.edu.tw - National Dong Hwa University - Taiwan

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Research objectives

Governance in higher education has witnessed profound transforms in the last twenty years or so. Associated with an escalation of scale of university student numbers, an expansion of client groups, and more stakeholders involved in the decision-making process, higher education reform seems to be an outcome of a mix of the development of globalization, the knowledge economy, and the information and technology revolution. Against the backdrop, university governance reform has been a major concern in transforming the higher education system in the East Asian region.

Higher education institutions, particularly in the public sector in Asia, were traditionally functioned as an extension of governmental administration or part of the bureaucratic machine within the wider governmental system. They were under the tight control of governmental regulations and rules, whereby tertiary education was delivered. The way of governing higher education has gradually changed since the 1990s. A wide range of East Asian countries and societies, such as Japan, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, began to redefine the relationship between government and university by devolving greater organizational autonomy to the institutional level. ‘Steering at a distance’ was chosen by many governments as a common response to political democratization, economic liberation, and greater social openness. However, different types of governance relationships arise in Asian countries due to their political and culture traditions.

The focus of this paper is on governance in higher education. The study aims to understand the change of university governance, which occurred when Taiwan began to shift from an authoritative government to a democratic one in the late 1980s. By analyzing the policy instruments that had been implemented in Taiwan’s higher education system, the study is to identify the key features of ‘good governance’ in the policy context in the past couple of decades.


Theoretical justification for the work

Christopher Hood’s classification of government tools was applied to distinguish the differences and similarities related to the relevant policy instruments. Based on the resources that the tools mostly rely upon for their effectiveness in governing practice, the present study differentiated four types of government tools: Information-based tools, authoritative tools, financial tools, and organizational tools.



The study is to apply document analysis, whereby official documents, policy texts, and information from newspapers and academic journals are included as various resources of research data.


Expected outcomes

Owing to the expanding participation, alongside the rising cost of public funding available to universities, Taiwan’s government launched a series of programs and alternatives in order to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of its higher education. In particular, policymakers and university administrators have been searching for approaches to steering the higher education institutions and introduced the instruments implemented to ensure university quality. These policy instruments that have been introduced to transform the way of delivering higher education reflect the features of new public management and neoliberalism.

Good governance, higher education, and the challenges of regional integration

Pilar Preciousa Berse - pberse@ateneo.edu - Waseda University (PhD Cand.)/ Ateneo de Manila University (Instructor) - Philippines

The level of regional cooperation among Southeast Asian countries has expanded dramatically over the past ten years since the inception of an accelerated ASEAN Community during the 12 th ASEAN Summit in Cebu in 2007. The region envisions, through the framework of what is now known as ASEAN Community 2025, to narrow developmental gaps on multiple sectors of the regional grouping’s economic, political-security and socio-cultural pillars. One key sector that the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC) pillar focuses on is the advancement of education, particularly of higher education with special emphasis on the development of and inclusion of courses that are related to Southeast Asia. This emphasis is aimed at fostering a deeper understanding of the region which is seen as a building block in creating people-centered communities of diverse backgrounds.

With ASEAN countries aggressively moving towards putting in place systems such as quality assurance, credit transfer, and student mobility that allow for the harmonization of higher education in the region, the commitment of national governments to follow through within their respective territories is of paramount importance. Good governance is key in translating regional commitments to harmonize its higher education system with counterparts in the region into achievable national policies.

Using the Philippines as a case study, the research hopes to answer the following questions:

  1. What regional agreement/s on higher education harmonization or integration is the Philippines committed to deliver?
  2. What initiatives have been put in place to translate regional commitments on higher education integration to national policies?
  3. What are the remaining challenges to good governance of the demands of regional integration in higher education?

The research is a qualitative study using semi-structured interviews of key informants from the Commission on Higher Education for its primary data. Secondary data includes publications, policies, and statistics by ASEAN and regional organizations such as AUN, SEAMEO-RIHED, UMAP with specific interest on higher education in Southeast Asia.


Network Public Opinion Management in Universities under the Objective of Good Governance


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    With the vigorous development of network technology all around the word, the network has gradually become a public opinion field to gather and distribute thoughts and culture as well as to express interests while the external environment of public opinion study and technological means have all changed accordingly. Research of public opinion in China is closely related to public opinion study and network public opinion in universities is one of the most important aspect of it. Hiding behind the transmission of network public opinion is the ever-increasing sense of civil rights to which government administrative departments research institutions and university teachers and students have attached great importance to since CPC’s eighteen session of the third plenary session. Currently, the bottleneck factors which restrict the improvement of administration level of network public opinion management in universities including: feeble resource planning, scattered management power, lack of information-sharing and so on.Governance theory is a key part of public management and the essential attributes of governance and public sentiment are closely related to their extrinsic attributes. As a result, network public opinion management in universities can be included in the analytical framework of governance theory. The so-called governance means good governance, that is, directing network public opinion management in universities with standards of good governance; taking realizing “good governance” as the goal; putting “good governance” as the value orientation; driving the line development by disposition of resources and promoting the long-term development with endogenous power.


A Review of PPP Experiment: A Good Governance Perspective

Zurina Md Nen - zurina707@salam.uitm.edu.my - Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) - Malaysia

JASMINE AHMAD - jasmi661@salam.uitm.edu.my - UNIVERSITI TEKNOLOGI MARA (UiTM) - Malaysia

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Public-private partnership (PPP) is recently seen as an attractive option for delivering public service and have become an important topic of discussion including in Malaysia. Having its root in neo-liberal thought and later shaped by New Public Management (NPM) reform movement, promoting good governance has been its underlying philosophy through which value for money (VFM) is materialized, and efficient as well as effective service delivery is enhanced by exploiting the private partner financial capacity and expertise. Nevertheless, despite many good promises it advocates, debates continue on the reality of PPP. In many parts of the world, empirical assessments on its implementation reveal contradictory result. Growing concern that PPP erodes the concept of public accountability, challenges the principle of transparency, ignores public participation justify that PPP suffers from governance deficit. This becomes more critical in Malaysia as the government is committed to advance its PPP implementation despite intense debates and criticism on PPP and its implication on governance. In addition, while there is rich discussion on PPP at the global level, a noticeable gap on PPP and its governance aspects literature in Malaysia is evident. Therefore, based on review of literature on PPP, this study is carried out to examine the experience of PPP from good governance perspective. In addition, it also analyzes practical lesson which are relevant to Malaysia. The paper concludes that for PPP to be tool in promoting good governance, its implementation in Malaysia context requires a proper framework which is built based on the lesson learnt from others. 


Keyword: Public-private partnership; Good Governance.

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