Facilitative Leadership Revisited – The Case of Norway
Facilitative leadership has long been a catchword in studies of mayoral leadership. Emphasizing cooperation, consensus-building and the empowerment of others, the facilitative model is said to be typical of council-manager systems of local government. Drawing on a study of long-serving mayors in Norway, the paper assesses the accuracy of the facilitative approach in a typical council-manager system. What does it entail as an ideal type and to what extent does it catch the essence of mayoral leadership as practiced in Norwegian local government? We argue that there are conspicuous and interesting examples of Norwegian mayors exercising strong, strategic, and visionary leadership within a ‘facilitative frame’, and that the facilitative model does not preclude a broader and more ‘expansive’ and ‘entrepreneurial’ approach to mayoral leadership.
Arendt, H. (1970) On violence (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World).
Baldersheim, H. (1990) Ledelse og innovasjon i kommunene (Oslo: Tano).
Baldersheim, H. (1992) Aldermen into ministers: Oslo experiment with a city cabinet. Local Government Studies, 18(1), pp. 18-30.
Bennett, R. J. (1993) Local government in the new Europe (London: Belhaven).
Berg, R., & Rao, N. (2005) Transforming local political leadership (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan).
Bjørnå, H., & Aarsæther, N. (2009) Combating Depopulation in the Northern Periphery: Local Leadership Strategies in two Norwegian Municipalities, Local Government Studies, 35(2), pp. 213-233.
Bjørnå, H., & Aarsæther, N. (2010) Networking for development in the North: power,trust,and local democracy, Government and Policy, 28(2), pp. 304-317, doi:10.1068/c0942.
Dahl, R. A. (1961) Who governs? Democracy and power in an American city (New Haven: Yale University Press).
George, A. L. & Bennett, A. (2005) Case studies and theory development in the social sciences (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press).
Goldsmith, M. (1990) Local autonomy: theory and practice, In: King, D. & Pierre, J. (eds.) Challenges to local government (London: Sage), pp. 15-36.
Goldsmith, M., & Larsen, H. (2004) Local Political Leadership: Nordic Style, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 28(1), 121-133, doi: 10.1111/j.0309-1317.2004.00506.x.
Greasley, S., & Stoker, G. (2008) Mayors and urban governance: developing a facilitative leadership style, Public Administration Review, 68(4), pp. 722-730.
Kjellberg, F. (1988) Local Government and the Welfare State: Reorganization in Scandinavia, In: Dente, B. a. K. F. (ed) The Dynamics of Institutional Change (London: Sage).
Kotter, J. P. & Lawrence, P. R. (1974). Mayors in action: Five approaches to urban governance (New York: Wiley).
Larsen, H. (1990) Ordføreren- handlekraft eller samlende symbol?, In: Baldesheim, H. (ed) Ledelse og innovasjon i kommunene (Oslo: Tano).
Larsen, H. (2002) Directly elected mayors - democratic renewal or constitutional confusion?, In: Caulfield, J. & Larsen, H. (eds.) Local government at the millenium. (Oppladen: Leske + Buldrich).
Larsen, H. O. (2001) Rollebegrepet i studiet av politisk lederskap, In: Fimreite, A. L., Larsen, H. O. & Aars, J. (eds.) Lekmannsstyre under press (Oslo: Kommuneforlaget).
Leach, S. & Wilson, D. (2000) Local political leadership (Bristol: Policy Press).
Leemans, A. F. (1970) Changing patterns of local government (The Hague: International union of local authorities).
Lidström, A. (2003) Kommunsystem i Europa (Stockholm: Liber).
Mouritzen, P. E. & Svara, J. H. (2002) Leadership at the apex: politicians and administrators in Western local governments (Pittsburgh, PA.: University of Pittsburgh Press).
Nagel, A. H. (1991) Kommunenes rolle i utviklingen av velferdsstaten (Vol. Norut Samfunnsforskning) (Bergen: Alma Mater Forlag).
Parsons, T. (1967) Sociological theory and modern society (New York: Free Press).
Pierre, J. & Peters, B. G. (2000) Governance, Politics and the State (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan).
Rhodes, R. A. (1997) Understanding governance: policy networks, governance, reflexivity and accountability (Buckingham: Open University Press).
Searing, D. D. (1991) Roles, rules, and rationality in the new institutionalism, The American Political Science Review, 85(4), pp. 1239-1260, doi: 10.2307/1963944.
Statistcs-Norway (2013) Kommunedatabasen (Oslo: SSB).
Steyvers, K., Reynaert, H., De Ceuninck, K. & Valcke, T. (2008) All politics is local, partisan or national? Local lists in Belgium, In: Reiser, M. & Holtmann, E. (eds.) Farewell to the Party Model?(Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften), pp. 169-193.
Stoker, G. (1998) Governance as theory: five propositions, International Social Science Journal, 50(155), pp. 17-28, doi: 10.1111/1468-2451.00106.
Stoker, G. (1999) The new management of British local governance (London: Macmillan).
Svara, J. (2005) Institutional Form and Political leadership in American City Government, In: Berg, R. & Rao, N. (eds.) Transforming Local Political Leadership (Houndmills, Basingstoke Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan).
Svara, J. H. (1987) Mayoral leadership in council-manager cities: Preconditions versus preconceptions. The Journal of Politics, 49(01), 207-227.
Svara, J. H. (1994) Facilitative leadership in local government: Lessons from successful mayors and chairpersons: Jossey-Bass Publishers San Francisco.
Svara, J. H. (2003) Effective mayoral leadership in council‐manager cities: Reassessing the facilitative model, National Civic Review, 92(2), pp. 157-172, doi: 10.1002/ncr.14.
Sweeting, D. (2003) How strong is the Mayor of London?, Policy & Politics, 31(4), pp. 465-478, doi: 10.1332/030557303322439353.
Wikstrom, N. (1979) The mayor as a policy leader in the council-manager form of government: A view from the field, Public Administration Review, 39(3), pp. 270-276, doi: 10.2307/975952.
Willumsen, T. (2012) Ordførerrollen: Lokalt politisk lederskap i praksis, Kommuneloven 20 år (Oslo: Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development) pp. 39-46.
Zhang, Y. & Feiock, R. C. (2010) City managers’ policy leadership in council-manager cities, Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 20(2), pp. 461-476. doi: 10.1093/jopart/mup015.
It is a condition that the authors assign copyright or license the publication rights in their articles, including abstracts, to Institute for Local Self-Government Maribor. This enables us to ensure full copyright protection and to disseminate the article, and of course Journal, to the widest possible readership in print and electronic formats as appropriate. Authors retain many rights under the Institutes' right policies, which can be found at journal.lex-localis.press. Authors are themselves responsible for obtaining permission to reproduce copyright material from other sources.