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    This article is about one of the experiments in local democratic renewal: MyBorne2030 (in Dutch ‘MijnBorne2030’). The aim of the project was to develop a communal vision for Borne (a relatively small suburban municipality of 20.000 inhabitants in the East of the Netherlands) for the year 2030. A steering committee of 20 local organizations has worked out four scenarios on the basis of three building stones: an identity study, a research of societal trends and the formulation of ambitions. These four scenarios have been submitted to the citizens of Borne in a referendum. The scenario that has received the most votes (‘Dynamic villages’) is further elaborated in a new vison for the future called MyBorne2030. Institutionally the decision-making process in Borne can be described as a mixture of participative (deliberative), associative and direct (plebiscitary) democracy. The authors conclude that it was a successful experiment, that has produced broad support for the vision of Borne for the future and a solid basis for the implementation of this vision. Participants (as well as non-participants) think this approach can be repeated not only in Borne, but also in other municipalities. The authors add that this could also be the case for the level above of cooperating municipalities.


Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB) en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Pieter-Jan Klok
Dr. P.J. Klok is universitair docent Beleidsprocessen bij de vakgroep Public Administration van de Universiteit Twente (Faculteit Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences).

    The first contribution to this special issue on local democracy in the Netherlands is the inaugural speech of Job Cohen (the former mayor of Amsterdam) held on January 9th 2015 at the University of Leiden as extraordinary professor at the prestigious Thorbecke-chair. His field is the theory of the municipality as an administrative, political and legal system. The title of his inaugural speech was ‘The fourth D’, in which the first three D’s stand for three different decentralizations of tasks to the Dutch municipalities and the fourth D for democracy. In his speech Cohen advocates a deliberative form of democracy, because it doesn’t emphasize differences and the exaggeration of differences, but emphasizes what the members of a community have in common. Deliberative democracy wants to create space for this common interest through the establishment of an arena for dialogue. Job Cohen is particularly taken by the ideas of the Belgian writer David Van Reybrouck about lottery selection and citizen participation and corresponding initiatives like G1000: a civic-summit, a form of deliberative democracy that generates new ideas, opens new perspectives and increases trust in the democratic process. The element of lottery selection (that was previously put on the agenda by the American professor James Fishkin) is essential for these results, because it creates a maximum of diversity and real involvement of all layers of the population: full citizen participation.


Prof. mr. dr. Job Cohen
Prof. mr. dr. M.J. Cohen is bijzonder hoogleraar decentrale overheden (Thorbecke-leerstoel) aan de Universiteit Leiden en redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Redactioneel

Inleiding op het themanummer ‘Dichtbij, Dialoog & Democratie’

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 2 2015
Auteurs Dr. Rik Reussing, Prof. dr. Bas Denters en Dr. Rogier van der Wal
Auteursinformatie

Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de opleiding European Public Administration aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB) en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Rogier van der Wal
Dr. R.L. van der Wal is strategisch beleidsadviseur wetenschap bij de Vereniging van Nederlandse Gemeenten (VNG) in Den Haag.

    Modern government has high expectations of active citizen participation. Sociologists however, expect that this emphasis on citizen participation leads to new inequalities between city neighbourhoods. In ‘better’ neighbourhoods relatively more inhabitants are higher educated and indigenous, categories that are traditionally more active in society. In vulnerable neighbourhoods on the other hand many of the inhabitants are non-indigenous, lower educated and unemployed, who – as is shown in research – participate less. Citizen initiatives therefore would prosper in neighbourhoods with resilient and competent citizens and a powerful social fabric, while inhabitants of the vulnerable neighbourhoods would participate less, although there is more need for active citizen participation, because of their problems. This study analyses active citizen participation in two neighbourhoods in the Dutch city of Rotterdam, ‘Schiemond’ and ‘Lloydkwartier’, a typical backward neighbourhood versus a typical neighbourhood for young urban professionals (‘yuppen’). In contrast with the expectations the inhabitants of Schiemond do not appear to participate less than the inhabitants of Lloydkwartier. Concerning matters of neighbourhood safety even more respondents participate in Schiemond than in Lloydkwartier. Possible reasons are: (a) that lower educated people do participate more often in informal neighbourhood initiatives; (b) that because of the average longer residency in Schiemond there is a greater amount of public familiarity in this neighbourhood; or (c) that because of the bigger problems in Schiemond there is a greater necessity for inhabitants to become active themselves.


Dr. Erik Snel
Dr. E. Snel is universitair docent bij de vakgroep sociologie van de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Kim Hoogmoed MSc
K. Hoogmoed MSc is in 2013 afgestudeerd in de sociologie aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam. Ze is momenteel medewerker van het examenbureau van de Universiteit Utrecht.

Dr. Arend Odé
Dr. A. Odé is manager onderzoek en advies bij Regioplan Beleidsonderzoek in Amsterdam. Hij is in 1996 gepromoveerd aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam bij het Tinbergen Instituut.

    This article is about local referenda in the Netherlands. Based on extensive empirical research the authors make clear how the local referendum in the Dutch democracy has developed not only in time and practice, but also how we can interpret the referendum theoretically. They show how in scientific literature, but also in practice, they are still looking for the meaning of the local referendum for Dutch local democracy. The authors also show that the practice of Dutch local referenda is searching, varied and in continuous development. Since 1906 193 local referenda are organized in the Netherlands. By far most referenda took place after the nineties of the last century. Local referenda are a local democratic ‘domain’, that will be explored in the Netherlands in the coming years. Last year a lot of attention has been given to the (local) referendum in the domain of legislation. The process of legislation has not been finished yet. The authors believe this offers an unique opportunity to share the available knowledge and experience about referenda and debate the adequate filling in and anchoring of the (local) referendum. This is a task for scientists, administrators and politicians alike.


Koen van der Krieken Msc
K.H.J. van der Krieken MSc MA is promovendus aan de Tilburgse School voor Politiek en Bestuur van de Universiteit van Tilburg.

Dr. Laurens de Graaf
Dr. L.J. de Graaf is werkzaam als universitair docent aan de Tilburgse School voor Politiek en Bestuur van de Universiteit van Tilburg.

Frank Oderkerk MSc
F. Oderkerk MSc is projectmanager en onderzoeker bij Schouten & Nelissen Inzicht.

    Does scaling up municipalities strengthen or does it weaken (local) political participation? This is an important question because of the intention – as it is written down in the Dutch coalition agreement – to gradually scale up Dutch municipalities to 100.000+ inhabitants. This article answers the question on the basis of a meta-analysis, voter turnouts, the national election study and interviews. The author has also examined behavioural indicators for political participation, especially the turnout figures at local elections. The conclusion from this analysis by the author is clear and unambiguous: as the size of the local government (the municipality) increases (local) political participation decreases. For a lot of forms of political participation a size of about 10.000 inhabitants seems to be the optimal scale for local government. Because other (recent) research in the Netherlands has shown that the assumed cost savings from municipal amalgamation are not achieved, the desirability of (further) upscaling of Dutch municipalities can be questioned.


Dr. ir. Pepijn van Houwelingen
Dr. ir. P. van Houwelingen is onderzoeker aan het Sociaal en Cultureel Planbureau bij de afdeling Participatie, Cultuur en Leefomgeving.

Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen en onderwijscoördinator van de opleiding European Public Administration aan de Universiteit Twente.

Dr. Gjalt de Graaf
Dr. G. de Graaf is universiteit hoofddocent Bestuurskunde aan de Vrije Universiteit te Amsterdam en redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen

    In his concluding remarks the chief editor (and also editor of this special issue) discusses shortly the desirability and feasibility of a global parliament of mayors as proposed by Benjamin Barber. On both points, according to him, the idea of a global parliament of mayors can be questioned. Concerning the desirability of the proposal there is no clarity about the underlying notion of democracy and about its contribution to the democratic goals it aims at. Concerning the feasibility of the proposal Bas Denters questions if Barbers high expectations of the blessings of advanced ICT tools, that will be used for a virtual debating platform, are that realistic. Crucial are also the financial and material resources which are needed for the organization and functioning of a global parliament of mayors.


Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB) en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Diversen

‘Maar ze hebben er wel over nagedacht’

Over de rol van gezag bij het voorkomen van vijandigheid jegens politieke ambtsdragers

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 1 2015
Auteurs Dr. Niels Karsten
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The aggression and violence towards political office-holders underline the importance of rethinking public authority. This essay contains an exploration of contemporary sources of authority for political office-holders and especially local executives. This is done on the basis of a review of the literature and an analysis of empirical research in this area. After an exploration of the sources of authority for Dutch mayors and aldermen, these sources of authority are related towards aggression and violence towards political office-holders with the help of the political theory of Chantal Mouffe. Based on this exploration the author argues that political office-holders who invoke generally accepted principles, values and norms, or who use personal sources of authority, are more favorable in the struggle against aggression and violence than other local executives who invoke institutional or delegated sources.


Dr. Niels Karsten
Dr. N. Karsten MA is universitair docent aan de Tilburgse School voor Politiek en Bestuur van de Tilburg University.
Praktijk

Werken aan bevlogenheid. Onderzoek onder gemeentelijke professionals

Reactie uit bestuurlijke praktijk

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 1 2015
Auteurs Mr. Anneke Knol-van Leeuwen
Auteursinformatie

Mr. Anneke Knol-van Leeuwen
Mr. A.G. Knol-van Leeuwen is gemeentesecretaris en algemeen directeur van de gemeente Vlaardingen. Tevens is zij lid van het dagelijks bestuur van de Vereniging van Gemeentesecretarissen (VGS) en voorzitter van de VGS-commissie Leiderschap, Organisatie en Samenwerking.

    At December 1st 2014 in the Dutch city of Nijmegen (known from the Treaty of Nijmegen, 1678) the yearly VanHeste-lecture took place. This year the mayors Hubert Bruls of Nijmegen (Netherlands) and Louis Tobback of Leuven (Belgium) discussed the binding role of the modern mayor. Their starting point was the latest book of the American political scientist Benjamin Barber ‘If mayors ruled the world’. Michiel Herweijer, professor of Public Administration at Radboud University Nijmegen, is supposed to lead the discussion. To structure the discussion between the two mayors he formulates six questions, which contain six reservations about the gospel of Benjamin Barber. His conclusion is that Barber has written a fascinating book that has aroused much discussion worldwide. This debate is a good thing, because there are at least six good reasons (the six reservations mentioned by Herweijer himself in this contribution) to abandon the idea of a global parliament of mayors.


Prof. dr. Michiel Herweijer
Prof. dr. M. Herweijer is redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen, directeur van de Noordelijke Rekenkamer en bijzonder hoogleraar bestuurskunde aan de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen.
Discussie

Access_open Debat: Op weg naar een wereldwijd parlement van burgemeesters?

Wereldwijd Burgemeestersparlement: utopie of utiliteit?

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 1 2015
Auteurs Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Auteursinformatie

Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB) en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

    In this contribution to the special issue on his own book ‘If Mayors Ruled the World: Dysfunctional Nations, Rising Cities’ Benjamin Barber first explains the background of his proposal to establish a global parliament of mayors: the failure of nation-states in solving the problems of the 21st century. The hope for a democratic solution lies especially in the rise of the cities and their mayors. A crucial role in this solution should be played by a global parliament of mayors. According to Barber the key issues for such a global parliament of mayors are climate change, immigration, policing and violence and urban autonomy. The biggest practical problem of this project is how thousands of representatives could meet on a regular basis. The digital technology of the information age offers the solution for this practical problem through a virtual platform for meetings of the global parliament of mayors. The global parliament of mayors is a unique form of intercity association that establishes a new form of political authority rooted in universal-rights claims: the rights of the city and citizens.


Prof. dr. Benjamin Barber
Prof. dr. B.R. Barber is als onderzoeker verbonden aan het Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, The Graduate Center, The City University of New York.

    The central argument according to Eric Corijn in the book of Benjamin Barber is that a legitimate political authority should be created that can add some governance, some regulation to the world system. Within the world system a democratic deficit has emerged that is caused by the process of globalization, in which international political and economic decisions are taken without reference to a global constituency, civil society, citizenship or global public opinion. Eric Corijn sees four strong arguments for an increased political role of mayors through a Global Parliament of Mayors. He also discusses three structural global challenges that can better be dealt with by cities than by dysfunctional nations: a) our relationship with nature, b) the growing social inequality, c) superdiversity resulting from migration and socio-cultural diversification. In dealing with these issues (the political agenda) the Global Parliament of Mayors should act in a pragmatic way.


Prof. dr. Eric Corijn
Prof. dr. E. Corijn is cultuurfilosoof, sociaal wetenschapper en hoogleraar Stadsgeografie aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Hij is oprichter van Cosmopolis, Centre for Urban Research (http://www.cosmopolis.be).

    This contribution gives an overview of the results of recent research into the role perception and the role behaviour of councillors. The research is the MAELG-survey (Municipal Assemblies in European Local Governance) carried out in 2007 and 2008 in 15 European countries and Israel. A special issue of Local Government Studies has been dedicated to this research. Three articles of this special issue are discussed intensively. These articles look at the role perception and the role behaviour of local councillors from the perspective of the tension between representative and participative democracy, the relation between participative democracy (also called citizen democracy) and the responsiveness of councillors and the influence of informal institutions on the representation style of local councils. Another recent article in Acta Politica looks specifically at the situation in Belgium. It is interesting that the authors do not apply the classic typology of representation styles (trustee and delegate), but an alternative typology (with delegation, responsiveness, authorization and accountability as four styles of representation) developed by the Dutch political scientists Andeweg and Thomassen.


Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen en onderwijscoördinator van de opleiding European Public Administration aan de Universiteit Twente.
Praktijk

‘Hij begrijpt er dus helemaal niets van!’ – een reactie

Reactie uit bestuurlijke praktijk

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 4 2014
Auteurs Drs. Jan Fraanje
Auteursinformatie

Drs. Jan Fraanje
Drs. J.K. Fraanje is gemeentesecretaris van de gemeente Boxtel en secretaris van de Vereniging van Gemeentesecretarissen (VGS).

Prof. dr. Michiel Herweijer
Prof. dr. M. Herweijer is redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen, directeur van de Noordelijke Rekenkamer en bijzonder hoogleraar bestuurskunde aan de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen.

Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen en onderwijscoördinator van de opleiding European Public Administration aan de Universiteit Twente.
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