This paper will discuss the problems involving the forms of association between municipalities in North East Italy and within the European perspective. These forms of association may be defined as examples of inter-municipality networks: a concept that allows us to shift emphasis from the rigidity in the organizational structure of any single local authority to the flexibility and functionality of relations between the actors as regards the policies that they mean to share and the different network rationales used according to the choice of governance model enacted. This represents a decisive step towards the practice of functional federalism and the construction of new forms of "network" polity.
Keywords: Network governance, public management, local government, strategic planning, regional studies.
Jel Code: H7, H0, P41, R0