Sub-theme XIII: Governance in Latin America

Over several decades, governments of Latin American countries have made efforts to reform their governance system and their policies (1) for facing the challenges of sustainable development and for establishing equitable and inclusive societies.

Improving public policies and delivery of services, these countries mainly focused more on improving decision-making and policy processes as well as on strengthening their institutions than on the content itself. Nowadays, countries and governments of Latin American (LA) region are confronting to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and to a changing context. LA countries need to continue to adapt their governance systems and to engage policy reforms (2) in a changing content (3).

Referring to good governance principles, some Latin American countries have still to ensure the implementation of the rule of law, transparency and accountability as well as the participation of the citizens to policy process. The government reforms will aim to ensure the engagement of all stakeholders in policy design, implementation and evaluation.

They have to improve methods and tools for managing public policies, reinforce capacities and competences in the public sector. Effective and efficient governance requests also reinforced coordination mechanisms between the key actors and the levels of governance.

In order to achieve the SDGs, the countries of the region have to monitor the impacts of public policies in different areas as well as to develop tools for policy design and implementation based on evidences and data management. Finding resources (fiscal policy) for upgrading key policies, as education or infrastructure (urban development) will also constitute a challenge for the governments of the region (4).

The countries from Latin American region have also to develop a ‘content’ approach for the key sectors for sustainable development: poverty alleviation, education, health, environment, water and energy management, economic growth and stability, employability, etc.

The following questions will be discussed in this sub-theme:

  • What is the social, economic and political context for these PA and governance system’ reforms?
  • What is the role of the governments and other stakeholders in governance processes in the region? How to engage the citizens and the key players?
  • What are the current reforms in terms of managing resources (Public Sector Financial Management, Fiscal Policy Reform, and Public Sector Employment/recruitment)?
  • What will be the next steps for reforms: institutional reforms, budgeting and auditing reforms, HRM reforms, public procurement (regulation and process) digital and open government innovations?
  • How to ensure public management and policy reforms in a context of changes and/or crises?
  • What are the key priorities in reforming governance systems in the region?
  • How to reinforce the coordination – horizontal (between ministries) and vertical: multi-level governance system?
  • What are the role of regional/international networks in these reforms of governance systems?

Comparative studies and analyses are very welcome.


  • How Much Has the Game Changed? Revisiting Policymaking in Latin America a Decade Later, by Jones, Mark P. IDB, 2017
  • OECD – Government at a Glance: Latin America and the Caribbean 2017
  • Chapter 11. Public Administration in Latin America: Adaption to a New Democratic Reality by Guillermo M. Cejudo in the International Handbook of Public Administration and Governance, Edited by Andrew Massey and Karen Johnston, Elgar, 2015
  • LAC 2030 Latin America and the Caribbean 2030: Future Scenarios, IDB, 2017

Download the Call for papers




15 February 2018: Abstract submission deadline
28 February 2018: Authors’ notification
1 June 2018: Final paper submission deadline
1 June 2018: Deadline for registration and payment

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