Informational governance - A systematic literature review of governance for sustainability in the Information Age

Soma, Katrine; Termeer, Katrien; Opdam, Paul


The rapid developments in all kinds of new information technologies, information networks and social media are increasingly affecting societies around the world. The so termed Information Age not only influences social relationships, economy and science, but also governance. Against this background and in the specific field of sustainability, informational governance is an emerging concept. It addresses two interrelated processes: (1) new forms of governing through information, and (2) transformative changes in governance institutions due to the new information flows. The aim of this article is to gain more insights into ways in which the Information Age impacts sustainability, and to suggest a research agenda with relevance to the field of informational governance. A systematic literature review resulted in a selection of 39 articles, of which 23 and 16 articles were identified in two-parallel searches. The increased human interconnectedness through e-governance, self-organization, private governing and empowerments are identified as core informational governance trends dealing with sustainability in the Information Age, and essential to future research.