The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, on the other hand, use ‘good governance’ to refer to a particular type of political and economic order. For them, ‘good governance’ is associated with the spread of democracy and transparency in governments and free markets. ‘Good governance’ is the opposite of arbitrary and self-seeking rule, corruption and cronyism, which have been endemic in some Third World societies.
However, the World Bank and IMF’s version of ‘good governance’ has been expansive to Third World peoples. Although the World Bank and the IMF started to emphasise different priorities following the crises in East Asia in the late 1990s, their ‘good governance’ is still associated with reduction in public expenditure, emphasis on exports and less charges in hospitals and schools. Any ‘governance’ can turn out to be ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘efficient’ or ‘efficient’, or ‘effective’ or ‘ineffective’.
In order to make governance ‘good’, certain variables, attributes or functions are ascribed to it. For World Bank or the UN Funding Agencies, governance is ‘good’ if it accepts tenets of LPG and liberal democracy. But it can assume any form of its own liking.
However, in order to be effective and viable, it has to be popular, participative and inclusive, though these attributes or qualities may tell upon ‘governance’, in terms of speed, cost, effect and efficiency. Remedy lies in having good governance, not in cosmetic palliatives or plastic surgery. ‘Good governance’ is essentially free from abuse and corruption, and with due regard for the rule of law.
Good governance is a process which enables an organisation, structure or institution to anticipate and prevent problems and to take readily all steps to solve them effectively and efficiently when they arise. The true test of “good” governance is the degree to which it delivers the goods in the form of the promise of human rights: civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights.
The key question is: are the institutions of governance effectively guaranteeing the right to health, adequate housing, sufficient food, quality education, fair justice and personal security? The concept of ‘good governance’ has been clarified by the Commission on Human Rights.
In its resolution (2000/64) the Commission identified the key attributes of good governance as:
(3) Accountability, prompt and effective action, learning and use of knowledge; and
To bring about structural change and reforms in their favour, they extend or attach aid, grants, donations on condition of replacing their old democracy and administration in some form.
An another analysis of ‘good governance’ exemplifies eight major characteristics:
(2) Rule of law;
(5) Consensus oriented;
(6) Equity and inclusiveness;
(7) Effectiveness and efficiency; and
Major donors and international financial institutions are increasingly basing their aid and loans on the condition that reforms that ensure “good governance” are undertaken.
Andrew Taylor has proposed that a state pursuing good governance would:
(i) Actively fight corruption and the use of public office for private gain;
(ii) Enhance democratic procedures, institutions and principles;
(iii) Institute limited terms for key public offices;
(iv) Reduce government in size and function;
(v) Remove economic controls;
(vi) Privatise state and parastatal enterprises;
(vii) Establish and enforce a code of conduct; and
(viii) Promote independent and effective judiciary.
At the global level, governance has been viewed primarily as intergovernmental relationships, but it must now be understood as also involving non-governmental organisations (NGOs), citizens’ movements, multinational corporations, and the global capital market. Interacting with these are global mass media of dramatically enlarged influence.
Globalisation evolves its own methods, means and mechanism of Global Governance. Still Global Governance is not world government. But it is moving toward a form of World Government mainly dominated by G-7. David calls this process as ‘transformationalism’ (David Held, A. McGrew, D. Goldblatt, and J. Perraton, Global Transformation: Politics, Economics and Culture, 1999).