Throughout Europe, local authorities are facing problems of scale. Municipalities have a variety of tasks, including service delivery and local policymaking. Furthermore, they represent the local society at other levels of government. Although this is a problem of all time, the downward vertical shift of governance is increasing the scale problem in sub-national tiers of government. This chapter focuses on those strategies in which scale enlargement is the main element. In other words, it addresses strategies in which regional governance serves as a solution to the problem of limited local governmental scale. It then discusses two models: 'consolidation' and 'new regionalism' and links these two approaches to the issue of democratic legitimacy. Some countries have decided to create new layers of government at the regional level, and others have improved inter-municipal cooperation. Responsibilities may be vested exclusively within a regional tier of government, or they may be shared by a number of cooperating authorities.

dx.doi.org/10.4324/9781315585451-5, hdl.handle.net/1765/127960
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Stapelbroek, K.H. (2016). The idea of democracy and the eighteenth century. In Governance and the Democratic Deficit: Assessing the Democratic Legitimacy of Governance Practices (pp. 61–77). doi:10.4324/9781315585451-5