government vs governance
Government and governance are two words that sound similar but are different in meaning. Difference between government and governance is confusing for many people, and this article intends to clarify the meaning and definition of the two words so as to leave no scope for confusion. An analogy can be drawn between officer and official and also bureaucrat and bureaucracy if we wish to understand difference between government and governance.
This is a body that comprises a person or a group of persons who run the administration of a country. This is a means in which power is exercised. There are various forms of governments such as democracy or autocracy but this article will remain confined to the general term government which is commonly used in social sciences. In normal circumstances, a state is run by a government that has a mandate from the people to run the affairs of the country and also a term that may be of 4-6 years to serve the state. Thus there is a succession of governments in any country or the same government may be elected again for a successive term if people feel that it has done its job of running the country in a fair and close to ideal manner.
The word governance refers to the activities of a government. In layman’s terms, it is the rules and laws made by the government that are sought to be implemented through a chosen bureaucracy which is referred to as governance. The process of governing people or a state is called governance.
Difference between government and governance
To understand the differences between government and governance, one can take the example of a business which is handled by a person or group of persons (called partners or owners). The way they run the business with the help of employees applying their knowledge and experience is called management. In a similar manner, government is the elected body of representatives headed by a person. This body has the mandate to rule or govern people. And the manner in which they use the established system and principles to run the affairs of the country is called governance.
Governance can be good or bad depending upon the perception of the people and they may accordingly choose to retain or vote a particular government out of power.
In nutshell, governance is what a government does. It is the exercise of powers that are bestowed upon the government according to set rules and regulations using a system of bureaucracy that defines governance. Government is merely an instrument for the purpose of governance.