Multilevel cross-border governance in the Czech-Saxon borderland: working together or in parallel?

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Martin Spacek

Abstract

Despite a large amount of literature on multilevel governance, relatively little empirical attention has been paid to decision-making in Central and Eastern Europe. This paper contributes to closing this research gap by focussing on multilevel cross-border decision-making across the Czech-Saxon border region. Specific attention is paid to the involvement of non-state actors and to the main challenges of cross-border multilevel governance in the case study’s region. Although there is a tendency on both sides of the border to invite partners from the private and nonprofit sectors into the decision-making process, the situation in the case-study region is far from the normative conceptualization of EU multilevel governance. For whole region the most important obstacles to balanced regional development were shown to be a multilevel mismatch, different languages, and the lack of a common strategy, while insufficient capacities at the local and regional levels were found on the Czech side.

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