Representation and legitimacy in collaborative freshwater planning: stakeholder perspectives on a Canterbury Zone Committee

Author: Sinner, J.; Newton, M. J.; Duncan, Ronlyn

Publisher: Cawthron Institute, Nelson

Type: Report

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Lincoln University


The long-term success of collaborative approaches to freshwater planning depends on their democratic legitimacy. With collaborative planning being promoted by the New Zealand government and trialled by several regional councils, this study is one of the first in New Zealand to gauge the wider community’s views of the legitimacy of this new approach. This report focuses on the issue of representation—how affected interests are involved in collaborative deliberations—and specifically the perceptions of the legitimacy of the collaborative process by those not directly involved in the deliberations themselves. These people were categorised broadly as people who attended workshops to provide input to the process, those who made formal submissions at a later stage in the process, and the general public. We asked the question, how does an individual’s or group’s level of involvement with a collaborative planning process affect their perceptions of the legitimacy of the process?

Subjects: Selwyn-Waihora Water Management Zone, Selwyn District, representation, democracy, legitimacy, water quality policy, collaboration

Copyright: © COPYRIGHT: Cawthron Institute. This publication may be reproduced in whole or in part without further permission of the Cawthron Institute, provided that the author and Cawthron Institute are properly acknowledged. (With the exceptions noted in, this metadata is available under a Creative Commons Zero license.)