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Inzicht in transparantie

Een essay over trade-offs achter algoritmische besluitvorming

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2020
Trefwoorden transparency, value conflict, algorithms, trade-offs, public values, ethics
Auteurs Joanna Strycharz Msc, Dr. ir. Bauke Steenhuisen en Dr. Haiko van der Voort
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Algorithms applied in public administration are often criticized for lack of transparency. Lawmakers and citizens alike expect that automated decisions based on algorithmic recommendations to be explainable. The focus of this article is the organizational context behind the idea of transparent algorithms. Transparency is portrayed as one of numerous values that are at play when algorithms are applied in public administration. The article shows that applying algorithms may lead to conflicts between these values. Such conflicts often result in trade-off decisions. Looking from the organizational perspective, we describe how such trade-offs can be made both explicitly and implicitly. The article thus shows the complexity of algorithmic trade-offs. As a result of this complexity, we not only call for more transparency about algorithms, but also more transparency about trade-offs that take place in public administration. Finally, we present a research agenda focused on studying the organization of trade-offs.


Joanna Strycharz Msc
J. Strycharz, Msc is universitair docent Persuasive Communication aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit Maatschappij- en Gedragswetenschappen.

Dr. ir. Bauke Steenhuisen
Dr. ir. B.S. Steenhuisen is universitair docent Organisatie & Governance aan de TU Delft, Faculteit Techniek, Bestuur en Management.

Dr. Haiko van der Voort
Dr. H.G. van der Voort is universitair docent Organisatie & Governance aan de TU Delft, Faculteit Techniek, Bestuur en Management.
Artikel

Pas op! Over beheerst risico’s beheersen in het governancetijdperk

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2015
Trefwoorden risk management, governance, inspection, organization, hybridization
Auteurs Dr. Mark de Bruijne, Dr. Bauke Steenhuisen en Dr. Haiko van der Voort
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Risks taken by some organizations may have considerable impact on society. In this contribution the assessment and management of risk are perceived to take place in a multi-actor setting. Within an organization operators, risk managers, and top managers interact about risk assessments and risk mitigation strategies. Public regulators and inspectorates increasingly focus on risk management systems instead of the operational activities or organizational outputs. Are organizations systematically assessing their risks? This contribution identifies two contrasting perspectives on risk assessment and risk mitigation in literature: risk management and risk governance. An empirical study in three sectors reveals evidence of both perspectives in practice. Companies adopt hybrid approaches, which are essential for the quality of risk assessment and mitigation. Indeed, adopting just one perspective seems dangerous. We conclude that public regulators and inspectorates might provide incentives to focus on just one perspective and suggest two heuristics for public inspectorates that respect hybrid approaches of risk assessment and mitigation.


Dr. Mark de Bruijne
Dr. M.L.C. de Bruijne is als universitair docent werkzaam aan de TU Delft, Faculteit Techniek, Bestuur en Management.

Dr. Bauke Steenhuisen
Dr. M.L.C. de Bruijne is als universitair docent werkzaam aan de TU Delft, Faculteit Techniek, Bestuur en Management.

Dr. Haiko van der Voort
Dr. H.G. van der Voort is als universitair docent werkzaam aan de TU Delft, Faculteit Techniek, Bestuur en Management.
Artikel

Virtueel vangnet of functionele beleidsdroom?

Publiek aandeelhouderschap als toezicht op de drinkwatersector

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2012
Trefwoorden Public ownership, drinking water, public utilities
Auteurs Bauke Steenhuisen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    By law Dutch companies providing drinking water have to remain in public hands. In practice, public shareholders often fulfil their role in an informal fashion and without much engagement. They hardly intervene to protect the public interest. Public ownership is deemed to be crucial but its effects are difficult to measure. In this article, we examine the (ever changing and varying) institutional conditions of two public water companies and discuss whether these conditions enable public shareholders to properly control these companies. By comparing the opinions and experiences of directly involved respondents, this article aims to answer the question whether and how public shareholders are able to act as regulators. There are indications that this kind of regulation will not be efficient enough when needed, though those involved do not see this as a problem. This article offers suggestions for municipalities and provinces to reflect more on their role in the drinking water sector.


Bauke Steenhuisen
Dr ir B.M. Steenhuisen is universitair docent Bestuurskunde aan de Faculteit Techniek, Bestuur en Management van de TU Delft
Artikel

Waterschappen en de borging van publieke waarden

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2006
Auteurs Willemijn Dicke en Bauke Steenhuisen
Auteursinformatie

Willemijn Dicke
Dr. Willemijn Dicke en ir. Bauke Steenhuisen zijn werkzaam aan de TU Delft bij Faculteit techniek, Bestuur en Management.

Bauke Steenhuisen
Dr. Willemijn Dicke en ir. Bauke Steenhuisen zijn werkzaam aan de TU Delft bij Faculteit techniek, Bestuur en Management.
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