Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2463

Editorial | Open Access

Local Self‐Governance and Weak Statehood: A Convincing Liaison?

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Abstract:  This thematic issue addresses the relationship between local self-governance and the state. Self-governance is understood as the rules that emerge in the local social and spatial context. Local self-governance of individual local groups, actors, communities, and their social and institutional arrangements are considered. From this situated collective entanglement, the interactions and relations with state authorities are analysed in the various contributions embedded in local contexts of different world regions and based on empirical social science research containing mostly interdisciplinary approaches. The nine case studies of this thematic issue reflect a variety of statehoods (weak to restrained), divers “intentionalities” of local self-governance (emancipatory and democratic, socio-economically, and socio-culturally oriented, security-driven or ecological), and their state-locality entanglements range between four forms of relationships: mutually supportive, conflictual, ambivalent, and avoiding.

Keywords:  local self‐governance; restrained statehood; self‐organisation; state; weak statehood



© Antje Daniel, Hans‐Joachim Lauth, Eberhard Rothfuß. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.