Comprised of a series of national case studies, this book critically examines initiatives in public participation and their relationship to developments in community governance. As such, the case studies enable national perspectives to be applied to crucial features of modern public policy and politics. Focusing on case studies in areas which are undergoing major social and institutional transformation and/or which raise particular issues because of the 'marginal' position of the areas within their nation-states, the book also concerns itself with developments in Western European countries and why people should logically support some but not other initiatives in public participation. This book will be very useful for students and academics in areas such as politics, public administration, social policy and sociology. It should also be of interest to local activists such as councillors, members of pressure groups and those concerned about modern trends in democracy.