Understanding stakeholders’ perspectives on the collaborative governance challenges in Sabah’s (Malaysian Borneo) jurisdictional approach

Julia Su Chen Ng, Colas Chevier, Jean-Marc Roda, Zaiton Samdin, Rachel Carmenta

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Collaborative governance is increasingly being used as a solution to address climate change and deforestation in the tropics, but its stakeholders face numerous challenges in making it work. This study aims to understand stakeholders’ perspectives on the challenges of collaborative governance, focusing on Sabah’s jurisdictional approach. We applied the Q-methodology to derive the perspectives of the stakeholders involved. The results revealed three significant perspectives. The first perspective, “participant factors,” highlighted that the representation of the ‘right’ stakeholders and the mandate to make decisions are inadequate. The second perspective, “non-progress in activities,” suggests that the lack of accountability hampers the progress of the initiative. The third perspective, “shared understanding,” reflects the stakeholders’ inability to agree on a common goal. The consensus regarding the collaboration challenge is that the jurisdictional approach initiative is new, and nobody knows how to implement it, emphasizing the need for higher-level government commitment. This study reveals the challenges of collaborative governance in a jurisdictional approach by providing empirical evidence of the diverse perspectives of stakeholders.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1699-1717
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Development Studies
Issue number11
Early online date11 Jun 2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023


  • agriculture
  • Borneo
  • Collaborative governance
  • environmental issues
  • jurisdictional approach
  • palm oil
  • Q-methodology
  • Sabah

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