A brief description of the project

Where environmental processes cut across socioeconomic boundaries, traditional top-down government approaches struggle to effectively manage and conserve ecosystems. Hence, governance arrangements that foster multi-actor collaboration across scales and jurisdictions are commonly put forward as a solution. A growing literature suggests that the effectiveness of such collaborative arrangements depends on how well patterns of actor collaboration actually fit and align with the boundary-spanning characteristics of the ecosystems they are set to solve. However, progress has been limitied in developing these emerging insights further due to a lack of empirical assessments of environmental outcomes, and due to a lack of frameworks spanning disciplinary borders that facilitate empirically grounded interdisciplinary theory development. This project will address this gap by developing a theoretically and methodological framework based on network modeling, and empirically address three research questions: (1) what social- and environmental factors drive actors’ selection of collaborative partners in collaborative arrangements, (2) what kind of activities are stimulated by collaborative arrangement, and (3) what are the environmental outcomes, at different scales, of collaborative arrangements. Empirically, the project focuses on the water council ‘Mälarens vattenvårdsförbund’ and the watershed management in and around lake Mälaren.