धर्मो रक्षति रक्षितः

GOVERNANCE FOUNDATION

INDIVIDUAL

A citizen is a member of a political community who enjoys the rights and assumes the duties of membership. A person can become a citizen based on the place of birth, nationality of one or both parents, or naturalization is granted full rights and responsibilities as a member of a nation or political community.

The role of citizenry in governance is multifaceted and vital for the health of any democracy. Citizens are not only the beneficiaries of government policies and programs but are also the cornerstone for ensuring accountability and transparency within the governing system. The foundation of this role lies in the active participation of citizens in the electoral process, where they exercise their right to vote to choose their representatives. This act is the most direct way citizens influence governance, mandating leaders to reflect their constituents’ needs and preferences.

Beyond voting, citizens engage in governance through various forms of civic participation. This can range from attending town hall meetings, participating in public consultations, and engaging in dialogue with their representatives, to more active roles such as serving on local boards, contributing to policy-making through advocacy groups, or even running for office. Such engagement ensures that governance remains responsive and inclusive, providing a platform for diverse voices to be heard and considered in the decision-making process.

Moreover, citizenry engagement is crucial in holding the government accountable. This involves being informed about government actions, critically assessing policy decisions, and questioning elected officials and public servants when necessary. Through tools such as freedom of information acts, social media, and investigative journalism, citizens can monitor government performance, expose corruption, and demand better governance. Therefore, the role of citizenry is not only to participate in governance but also to constantly monitor and guide it, fostering a government that is of the people, by the people, and for the people.

Good Governance and Citizenship

Good governance and active citizenship are two sides of the same coin; each is both a cause and a consequence of the other. Good governance refers to the efficient and effective administration of a country’s resources and affairs in a manner that is open, transparent, accountable, equitable, and responsive to the needs of the people. It is characterized by participation, rule of law, consensus orientation, equity, inclusiveness, effectiveness, efficiency, and accountability.

What they mean for the governance and citizens is described as below:

An important tenet of good governance is gender equality in participation. Direct participation or participation through reputable intermediary institutions or representatives are also acceptable options. It is crucial to note that representative democracy does not automatically imply that the issues of society’s most disadvantaged people would be taken into account when making decisions. Participation must be well-informed and well-organized. This implies, on the one hand, freedom of association and expression, and, on the other, an organised civil society.

Fair legal structures that are applied consistently are necessary for good governance. Moreover, comprehensive protection of human rights, particularly those of minorities, is necessary. An independent judiciary and an unbiased, incorruptible police force are necessary for the impartial implementation of the law.

Transparency is the practice of making decisions and carrying them out in a way that complies with laws and regulations. Additionally, it implies that individuals who may be impacted by such choices and their implementation have open access to information. Also, it indicates that sufficient information is given in formats and mediums that are simple to comprehend.

Institutions and procedures must make an effort to serve all stakeholders in a fair amount of time in order to be considered good governance.

In any given society, there are several actors and perspectives. To develop a broad social consensus on what is in the best interest of the entire community and how this might be accomplished, good governance necessitates the mediation of the various interests in society. Furthermore, it necessitates a long-term, comprehensive viewpoint on what is required for sustainable human development and how to accomplish its objectives. Understanding the historical, cultural, and social settings of a particular society or community is the only way to accomplish this.

The well-being of a society is dependent on ensuring that all of its members believe they have a stake in it and do not feel excluded from society’s mainstream. This necessitates that all groups, but especially the most vulnerable, have access to chances to enhance or maintain their wellbeing.

In order for procedures and organizations to be considered to be practicing good governance, they must create outcomes that satisfy societal demands while maximizing the use of available resources. The efficient use of resources and environmental preservation are also included in the definition of efficiency in the context of good governance.

A crucial element of good governance is accountability. Governmental institutions, as well as the business sector and civil society organizations, must be held accountable to the public and its institutional stakeholders. Depending on whether decisions or actions are taken internally or externally by an organization or institution, different parties may be held accountable. In general, an organization or institution must answer to individuals who will be impacted by its choices or actions. Without transparency and the application of the law, accountability cannot be imposed.

KNOWLEDGE REPOSITORY

RELATED VIDEOS​

धर्मो रक्षति रक्षितः

You can contribute to help us take our work forward.

visitor counter

© Copyright 2023 Governance Foundation. All Rights Reserved.