Book Review: Local Government in a Global World: Australia and Canada in Comparative Perspective

Claudia Scott


This book compares reform trends in Australia and Canada’s local government systems over the past two decades, with attention to the impact of globalization on local governments, their bureaucracies, and local democratic accountability. Local governments in Australia and Canada show striking resemblances in relation to history, development, and contemporary issues. This reflects that in both countries, local governments remain an instrument of the states and provinces.

The exploration of the connections between globalization and local government is timely given the importance of international influences on the economic, social and environmental challenges facing governments. For the local governments discussed in the book, and for many others, economic and fiscal constraints have reduced the sector's ability to meet community expectations while also responding to growing competitiveness across jurisdictions. These pressures have highlighted the benefits of encouraging regional and local differentiation, and giving prominence to ‘place’ in policy and management designs and practices.

Full Text: