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Reading: Urban Visions: Lessons in Governance from Two Brazilian Cities


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Urban Visions: Lessons in Governance from Two Brazilian Cities


Ivani Vassoler

State University of New York, Fredonia (SUNY)
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Why are some governments more able or willing than others to escape a vicious circle of unproductive policies and take a path of more satisfactory public programs? What are the determinants of good governance strategies? Which factors contribute to better public policies outcomes? These are the main questions I confronted as I examined two distinct governance strategies in place in the Brazilian cities of Curitiba and Porto Alegre. In addition to their similarities in terms of population size, demographics, level of economic development, and their subordination to the dynamics of both the national and international political economy, both state capitals share a history of successive municipal governments committed to a comprehensive urban development program, thus contrasting with an array of misconceived public strategies that is ailing many other cities in Brazil, and other Latin American urban centers as well. Perhaps one of the most outstanding features of Curitiba and Porto Alegre’s governance strategies is their governments’ ability to maintain a coherent policy environment, thus departing from the widespread and damaging public sector practice in Brazil of policy derailment.
How to Cite: Vassoler, I., (2007). Urban Visions: Lessons in Governance from Two Brazilian Cities. Middle Atlantic Review of Latin American Studies. 17(1), pp.94–104. DOI:
Published on 01 Jan 2007.
Peer Reviewed


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