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Module Code - Title:


Year Last Offered:


Hours Per Week:













Grading Type:


Prerequisite Modules:

Rationale and Purpose of the Module:

The aim of this module is to enable students to understand the significant changes that have taken place in processes of governing at international, national and local levels. The module explores the manner in which the interaction of various levels and the involvement of diverse actors have impacted on politics, policy and polity. The meanings, origins and various applications of the phenomenon of multi-level governance (MLG) are analysed in order to assess its normative and empirical impact. Particular attention is paid to the emergence of MLG as a significant framework of policy-making in the EU as well as its effects on domestic and global contexts.


This module explores the distinctions between government and governance and considers the conceptualisations and implications of MLG. Topics include: Government and governance; new modes of governance; MLG, theory or explanation; MLG as compound democracy; MLG in the international policy arena (e.g., climate change, finance, tobacco control); MLG in the EU; MLG in the domestic context. The topics will be considered from both theoretical and applied perspectives and will direct students to the vast array of interpretations and applications of the MLG phenomenon.

Learning Outcomes:

Cognitive (Knowledge, Understanding, Application, Analysis, Evaluation, Synthesis)

On completion of this module students will: • display disciplinary knowledge about new modes of governance, particularly, MLG • demonstrate understanding of theories and applications of MLG • be familiar with the analytical and normative concepts and empirical evidence required for critical evaluation of MLG in domestic, European and global contexts • have honed the research and communication skills required for effective (oral, written and digital) and informed presentation of their views • have the competence to articulate and evaluate different interpretative approaches to MLG

Affective (Attitudes and Values)

On completion of this module students will: • show awareness of the relevance of knowledge of MLG to real world problems and challenges • appreciate the difficulties and complexities associated with governance at multiple levels • exhibit the ability to relate appropriately to other people and function collaboratively

Psychomotor (Physical Skills)


How the Module will be Taught and what will be the Learning Experiences of the Students:

The topics of governance, in general, and MLG, in particular, feature in the dominant discourse of contemporary politics and public administration. The specific issues highlighted in the module are topical and the module resources are up to date and reflect current thinking on the module themes.(Knowledgeable) The module will be taught interactively using a range of pedagogic and investigative strategies (Articulate, Creative, Proactive). Both formative and summative assessments will be used (Articulate). Individual and group-work techniques will be employed (Collaborative). PBL approaches will be used and some activities will be carried out online (Collaborative, Creative). In addition to expansion of their knowledge and communicative abilities, students will be given opportunities to develop skills of self-organisation and time management and will be facilitated to make topic choices which complement their interests, learning styles and professional leanings(Responsible, Proactive). The knowledge, judgement and interpersonal skills developed through the module can be used by students to contribute to political, civil, social and cultural milieux (Creative, Responsible).

Research Findings Incorporated in to the Syllabus (If Relevant):

Prime Texts:

Enderlein, H., Sonja Wälti and Michael Zürn (editors) (2010) Handbook of Multi-Level Governance , Edward Elgar
Cepiku,D., DK Jesuit and I Roberge (editors) (2013) Making Multilevel Public Management Work: Stories of Success and Failure from Europe and North America , CRC Press
Osborne, S (2010) The New Public Governance , Routledge

Other Relevant Texts:

Vickers, J. (2013) Federalism Feminism and Multilevel Governance , Ashgate
Bache, I. and M. Flinders (2004) Multilevel Governance , Oxford University Press
Kjaer, A.M. (2004) Governance , Polity Press

Programme(s) in which this Module is Offered:

MAEPGOTFA - European Politics and Governance
MAIGSTTFA - Irish - German Studies
MAPDSTTFA - Peace and Development Studies
MASYCSTFA - Sociology (Youth, Community and Social Regeneratio
MASYCSTPA - Sociology (Youth, Community and Social Regeneratio
MAINSTTFA - International Studies
MAPOLITFA - Politics
MAPUADTFA - Public Administration

Semester - Year to be First Offered:

Module Leader: