Local Government: A Social Ontology of Care

Date and Time


Mackinnon 019


What is ‘local government’, and how can it be understood?

Join our guest speaker who takes a theoretical lens to question, study and challenge our underlying assumptions about good or bad local government within different contexts.

The day-to-day well-being of people worldwide is affected in dissimilar ways and intensity by local governments. In some countries, residents are barely aware of this sphere of government, while in other countries, they live through vivid experiences of good or bad local government. Local government is a human construct characterised by three defining attributes, namely institutional, behavioural and territorial. Derived from this conceptual framework, a universal social ontology of care has been crafted for serving as theoretical lens to question, study and challenge our underlying assumptions about good or bad local government within different contexts. It is proposed that the ultimate consequence of local government is society’s experience of being-cared-for and feeling at home. 

Guest Speaker

image of JS Wessels

JS (Kobus) Wessels (DPhil, University of Pretoria) is a professor of Public Administration at the University of South Africa (Unisa). He is rated by the National Research Foundation (NRF) as an established researcher. His research focuses on meaningful knowledge about public administration. He is co-editor of and contributor to several scholarly books, and has authored and co-authored more than 60 peer-reviewed publications as well as several other contributions and reports.   

Read more about JS Wessels

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