In this manuscript we conclude the special issue on Water Governance. We look back on the different contributions and discuss different interesting insights from the three contributions focusing on Wisconsin, California and Southern Ecuador. We place these insights into a new perspective on integration, i.e. system synchronization, which the authors consider to be an option for integration in complex governance systems, where nobody is in charge. Points for practitioners In this epilogue we have picked the fruits of the contributions to this symposium. We have come to another way of looking at the fragmentation-integration debate in public administration, i.e. system synchronization. By discussing different water cases from Wisconsin, California and Southern Ecuador, we have arrived at three principles of system synchronization: Synchronization means self-organization and variation; Synchronization means thinking and acting between self and the larger whole; Synchronization means operating on and beyond the boundaries of subsystems. These principles are needed to realize system synchronicity in which different subsystems largely hold their identity, but strive for coherence.

multi-level government, public administration, public management
dx.doi.org/10.1177/0020852310390121, hdl.handle.net/1765/25623
International Review of Administrative Sciences: an international journal of comparative public administration
Erasmus School of Economics

Teisman, G.R, & Edelenbos, J. (2011). Towards a perspective of system synchronization in water governance: A synthesis of empirical lessons and complexity theories. International Review of Administrative Sciences: an international journal of comparative public administration, 77(1), 101–118. doi:10.1177/0020852310390121