A metropolitan area is a special form of territorial organisation composed of many territorial units. To ensure their development it is necessary to introduce an appropriate system of management based on the concept of governance which requires that all stakeholders (local authorities, central government, business, researchers, NGOs, citizens etc.) are involved in the management process. The article aims to ascertain whether intercommunal associations can become the first step on the way to implementation of the concept of governance in metropolitan areas in Poland. The article describes features of inter-communal associations as a form of management of territorial systems. The second part of the article analyses existing inter-communal associations in Polish metropolitan areas. The article concludes that the current state of affairs does not justify a statement that inter-communal associations are or will become, in the immediate future, a dominant form of managing public affairs in metropolitan areas.