Nowadays the terms “Governance” and “Good Governance” are being used widely. Major reforms, actions, changes and even donations and institutional activities are basing all their rules and regulations which will help achieve “good governance”.


Governance is the process or system by which entities are administered or directed and controlled. It is the process of decision making and the process of deciding the actors who will be involved in the decision making process and implementation of decisions.

The concept of “governance” has been used from past many years and can be used in several contexts such as international or national governance, corporate governance, local governance etc. One of the major actor of governance is “government” and other actors involved in the process of governance are NGOs, private bodies, landlords, research institutes, religious leaders, political parties, military etc.


The term “Good Governance” originated from the report entitled ” Governance and Development” which was published by World Bank in year 1992. The World Bank defined Good Governance as “the manner in which power is exercised in the management of a country’s economic and social resources for development”.

Thus, good governance is an approach which aims in creating a system which finds justice and peace and ensures the protection of individual’s human rights and liberties. Good Governance is measured by 8 characteristics : Participation, Rule of Law, Transparency, Responsiveness, Consensus Oriented, Equity and Inclusiveness, Effectiveness and Efficiency, and Accountability.

Good Governance is a process of governance that considers the views of minorities and vulnerable groups of society and minimizes corruption while taking decisions thereby boosting the economy.


  1. The importance of Governance is clearly highlighted and explained in Indian Constitution which is based on – Sovereign, Socialist, Secular and Democratic Republic for attaining democracy, rule of law and welfare of people.
  2. The Sustainable Development Goal q6 also describes the linkage between improvement of governance, inclusivity, participation, rights and security.
  3. The Bhagavad Gita also provides numerous indications of good governance, leadership, dutifulness and self realization.
  4. According to former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, “Good governance is ensuring respect for human rights and the rule of law; strengthening democracy; promoting transparency and capacity in public administration.” He also said that “Good Governance is perhaps the single most important factor in eradicating poverty and promoting development”.


Principles of Good Governance
  1. Participation: Participation by each section of the society irrespective of their gender, social class, caste, income etc. The participation of the individuals can be through direct or indirect (through other institutions or representatives) mediums. Participation is an crucial part of governance because it brings forward the major concerns of the society, the issues as well as in identification of potentials of the area.
  2. Rule of Law: It ensures fair and legal frameworks and methods being used in the governance and enforces impartially. This requires full protection of human rights, especially of the weaker sections and vulnerable groups of the society. For this the law needs to be impartial, uncorrupted and judicial.
  3. Transparency : Transparency in a process or system or governance ensures that all the decisions, actions and enforcements are taken only after considering the governing rules or laws or regulations. It signifies the availability of information’s to all the stakeholders and the people who will be affected by the actions or enforcements.
  4. Responsiveness: Good Governance requires timely actions and processes and tries to serve all the stakeholders within a reasonable time frame or specified time frame.
  5. Consensus Oriented: Good Governance requires different interests to sum up into a broad consensus to show the best interest for the community and society. It is necessary for developing sustainable human development and the only way by which cultural, social and historical diversity can be preserved.
  6. Equity and Inclusiveness: Equity and Inclusivity ensures that all the members of the community or society are feeling free to put forward their concern and idea. Nobody should feel excluded. Equity and Inclusivity is highly important for minor or vulnerable groups because it is very important to give them the opportunities to express their issues and ideas for improving and maintaining their well being.
  7. Effectiveness and Efficiency: The results or outcomes of the processes should satisfy the needs of the society and should make the best use of available resources, without exploiting them. It is necessary to identify the potentials and weaknesses of the society or community or area before coming up or implementing any solution. All the outcomes and results should within desirable time frame and should be the best decisions for the welfare of the society.
  8. Accountability: It is one of the most vital requirements of good governance as it ensures that all the stakeholders (government bodies or private institutions or civil organizations or NGOs etc) are accountable to the public. Who is accountable to whom depends on the actions or decisions which are taken in the organization.
What makes Good Governance different from Bad Governance


From the above discussion it is clear that “Good Governance” is the most ideal form of governance but it requires transperancy, accountability and intelligent form of governance which makes it more difficult to achieve. For achieving good governance, a system much be uncorrupted, bias free and free from prejudices.

Thus, there is a need to reform and reformulate strategies for restoring good governance. The government should focus on the principle of : “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas and Sabka Vishwas” which will guide the way to achieve inclusive and sustainable development.