Zoekresultaat: 70 artikelen

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    From 1964 until roughly 1990, political science would become the dominant approach within the (local) administrative sciences in the Netherlands. This central position was taken over from the legal approach. Important impulses from political science for Public Administration came only from the second-generation political scientists: Gijs Kuypers at the Free University Amsterdam, Hans Daudt at the University of Amsterdam and Hans Daalder at the University of Leiden. In their footsteps, a political scientist emerged who, through his contribution to several universities (the Free University, the University of Nijmegen and the University of Twente), had a great deal of influence on the further development of Dutch Public Administration: Andries Hoogerwerf. Two other approaches emerged from political science that were important for the development of modern public administration in the Netherlands, namely policy science and the new political economy (public choice). In this essay the author outlines the input of the main figures from political science, policy science and public choice until 1990 in various stages that are most relevant to Public Administration. These stages take us to various cities and universities in the Netherlands. In addition, we see important cross-fertilization between the institutions through the transfer of people from one university to another. After 1990 however, Public Administration would increasingly profile itself as an independent inter-discipline.


Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Literature Review

Access_open Preference Voting in the Low Countries

A Research Overview

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden elections, electoral systems, preference voting, candidates, personalization
Auteurs Bram Wauters, Peter Thijssen en Patrick Van Erkel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Preference votes constitute one of the key features of (open and flexible) PR-list electoral systems. In this article, we give an extensive overview of studies conducted on preference voting in Belgium and the Netherlands. After elaborating on the definition and delineation of preference voting, we scrutinize studies about which voters cast preference votes (demand side) and about which candidates obtain preference votes (supply side). For each of these aspects, both theoretical approaches and empirical results are discussed and compared. At the same time, we also pay attention to methodological issues in these kinds of studies. As such, this research overview reads as an ideal introduction to this topic which has repercussions on many other subfields of political science.


Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is an associate professor at the Department of Political Sciences of Ghent University, where he leads the research group GASPAR. His research interests include political representation, elections and political parties, with special attention to diversity. He has recently published in journals such as International Political Science Review, Party Politics, Political Studies, and Political Research Quarterly. He is co-editor (with Knut Heidar) of ‘Do parties still represent?’ (Routledge, 2019).

Peter Thijssen
Peter Thijssen is a professor at the Department of Political Science of the University of Antwerp, where he is a member the research group M2P (Media, Movements and Politics). His research focuses on political sociology, public opinion and political participation. He has published in such journals as British Journal of Sociology, Electoral Studies, Energy Policy, European Journal of Social Theory, Party Politics and Risk Analysis. He has co-edited ‘New Public Spheres’ (Ashgate, 2013) and ‘Political Engagement of the Young’ (Routledge, 2016).

Patrick Van Erkel
Patrick van Erkel is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Political Science of the University of Antwerp, where he is connected to the research group M2P (Media, Movements and Politics). His research interests include electoral behavior, public opinion, political communication and polarization. He has published in journals such as the European Journal of Political Research, Electoral Studies, European Political Science Review and the Journal of Elections, Public Opinion & Parties.
Research Notes

Sub-Constituency Campaigning in PR Systems

Evidence from the 2014 General Elections in Belgium

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Sub-constituency campaigning, PR system, political advertisements, election campaign, content analysis
Auteurs Jonas Lefevere, Knut De Swert en Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Sub-constituency campaigning occurs when parties focus their campaign resources on specific geographical areas within an electoral district. This behaviour was traditionally thought to occur only in single-member plurality elections, but recent research demonstrates that proportional systems with multi-member districts can also elicit sub-constituency campaigning. However, most studies of sub-constituency campaigning rely on self-reported measures of campaigning, not direct measures of campaign intensity in different regions and communities. We present novel data on geographical variations in the intensity of Flemish parties’ campaign advertising during the 2014 general elections in Belgium, which provides a direct measure of sub-constituency campaigning. Our findings show clear evidence of sub-constituency campaigning: parties campaign more intensely in municipalities where they have stronger electoral support and in municipalities with greater population density.


Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is assistant professor at Vesalius College and the Institute for European Studies (VUB). His research interests include the strategic communication of political elites, the effects of campaign communication on political attitudes and electoral choice and the role of issue perceptions in electoral behavior.

Knut De Swert
Knut De Swert is Assistant Professor, Political Communication and Journalism, at the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands). His research is situated in the field of media and politics, and mainly focuses on the quality of (political) journalism and foreign news in a comparative perspective.

Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi is a student research assistant for the EOS research project RepResent which focuses on representation and democratic resentment. She is currently following a Research Master’s at the University of Amsterdam with an interest in political communication research.

    In this article in the series on the local democratic audit, the authors discuss the relationship between decentralization, scaling-up and local democracy. Decentralizations and scaling-up operations have changed the face of local government in the Netherlands considerably in recent decades. What have the consequences for the functioning of local democracy been? Although decentralizations aim to increase democratic control of government tasks, decentralizations appear to have weakened local democracy in two ways. First of all, they have led to a substantial scaling-up of the local government, through municipal amalgamations and especially through the formation of regional partnerships. Regionalization in particular has had all kinds of negative consequences for the functioning of local democracy. Decentralization policy itself has also weakened the steering and controlling role of the city council – certainly in the short term – while decentralization presupposes that the city council has a strong role in coordinating decentralized policy with local wishes and circumstances. We can speak of a ‘double decentralization paradox’ that entails both bottlenecks and opportunities. From the legislator’s side, therefore, an integral vision for the organization of domestic governance is needed.


Prof. dr. Marcel Boogers
Prof. dr. M.J.G.J.A. Boogers is hoogleraar Innovatie en Regionaal Bestuur aan de Universiteit Twente, senior adviseur Openbaar Bestuur bij BMC en tevens redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Literature review

Consensualism, Democratic Satisfaction, Political Trust and the Winner-Loser Gap

State of the Art of Two Decades of Research

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden consensualism, majoritarianism, political trust, satisfaction with democracy, Lijphart
Auteurs Tom van der Meer en Anna Kern
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Lijphart (1999) argued that citizens tend to be more satisfied with democracy in consensual democracies than in majoritarian democracies and that the gap in democratic satisfaction between the winners and the losers of elections is smaller under consensualism. Twenty years on since then, this article takes stock of the literature on consensualism and political support. We find considerable ambiguity in the theoretical arguments and empirical evidence provided in this literature. Finally, we speculate on possible reasons for this ambiguity.


Tom van der Meer
Tom van der Meer, University of Amsterdam.

Anna Kern
Anna Kern, Ghent University.

    Debates about the quality of local democracy are not new. This was also the case 100 years ago. In 1918 the ground-breaking dissertation of Adriaan Buriks on democratic municipal government was published in the Netherlands. In his dissertation Buriks proposed a radical democratic reform of Dutch municipal government by adopting the new system of ‘commission government’ from the US. That is a system of city government in which (almost) all city authority functions are concentrated in a small commission. The commission is organized in such a way that each member of the commission is the head of a city government department, every member is chosen by the population of the whole city and the exercise of authority is controlled by the whole population. The essay describes the remarkable life of this social revolutionary and municipal law expert. It goes on to discusses the dissertation through an introduction on the central issue of democratic municipal government, a description of the government systems of the US before and after the American Revolution of 1787, a description of the new system of ‘commission government’ and his proposal to adopt the new system in the Netherlands. The essay is closed by the author’s reflection on how the dissertation was received and its impact.


Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Artikel

De interactielogica van verzet: een dramaturgische analyse van escalatie tijdens een informatieavond

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Protest, Governance, Participation, Dramaturgy, Interaction logic
Auteurs Sander van Haperen MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Theory about participation has long moved beyond merely informing citizens, arguing for more influential and effective instruments. Nevertheless, ‘inspraak’ remains widely implemented in Dutch practice, with mixed results. This article argues that the deliberative quality of the instrument is closely related to the performance of power. Dramaturgical concepts are employed to analyze resistance against the siting of a homeless facility in an Amsterdam neighborhood. One particular evening sets the stage for escalation, which ultimately frustrates the policy process. The analysis shows how the performance of the meeting invokes specific kinds of resistance. A different performance of ‘informing’ could potentially improve the quality of the public sphere.


Sander van Haperen MSc
Sander van Haperen MSc is promovendus Political sociology aan the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research, Universiteit van Amsterdam.

    In this essay, the author is looking for pioneering local administrators in the Netherlands who dared to push existing boundaries. However, the story starts in Great Britain where progressive liberals under the label ‘municipal socialism’ proceeded to provide public utilities through municipal governments rather than private enterprises. Their example was adopted by the so-called ‘radicals’ in Amsterdam led by Wim Treub. ‘Aldermen socialism’ with Floor Wibaut in Amsterdam as its most important representative, took it a step further. Their aim for a welfare municipality anticipated the later welfare state. After the Second World War we also saw some strong local administrators who in their own way strived for changes in their municipalities. After 1970 the phenomenon of ‘urban renewal’ led to a new flourishing of ‘aldermen socialism’ in the Netherlands with Jan Schaefer (in Amsterdam) as its most appealing figurehead. Since 2000, we have been in a new era of dualism, citizen participation and devolution that has produced new 'boundary pushers', which generated interest abroad (see the book on mayors by Benjamin Barber). At the end of the article, the author takes a look into the future. Current global problems also confront municipalities and they require local administrators with a good mix of political leadership, new civic leadership, inspiring commissioning and good stewardship. This essay is written for the ‘Across boundaries’ annual conference of the VNG (the Association of Netherlands Municipalities founded in 1912) held in Maastricht (in the far south of the Netherlands) in 2018.


Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.

    The increased complexity of multilevel democracies makes the evaluation of the performances of the government an increasingly difficult task for citizens. Multilevel governance involves information costs, which makes it more difficult for citizens to give clear responsibility for government tasks to the correct level of government. This article contains the first study that is focussing on the responsibility perceptions in the Netherlands. The authors do not just look at who citizens hold responsible for certain government tasks, but they also look at the consequences of these perceptions for the mechanism of accountability. The satisfaction of citizens are with the policy in a particular area should only influence the political support for the level of government they hold responsible. Results of the research are that in line with this perspective a strong correlation exists between satisfaction with the pursued policy and trust of the citizens in this government, in proportion as they hold a level of government more responsible. On the other hand there are large differences between citizens, that correlate with their level of education. So there are also large groups of citizens for whom it is not possible to keep governments responsible for the policy pursued, because they simply do not know which government is responsible.


Lisanne de Blok MSc
E.A. de Blok MSc is promovendus aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam. Hiervoor deed ze een research master sociale wetenschappen aan dezelfde universiteit en liep ze stage bij de Raad voor het openbaar bestuur (Rob).

Prof. dr. Wouter van der Brug
Prof. dr. W. van der Brug is hoogleraar Politicologie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

    In a final view the other guest editor draws conclusions on local democracy based on the analyses of the Local Election Research presented in this special issue. The good news is that the basic attitude of the Dutch people about their local democracy, their local institutions and their local government is quite positive. A picture of trust and satisfaction arises from the data that are available. However, the picture is much less positive if we look at the local democracy from the perspective of the monitoring citizen. The outcomes of municipal elections are largely dictated by national party preferences, which is both harmful for the process of representation before and the control and accountability after the election of the municipal council. In addition, the level of political participation at the local level is rather low and the participants are not a balanced reflection of the population, even in new forms of participation that are especially designed to break the dominance of the permanent participation elite.


Prof. dr. Tom van der Meer
Prof. dr. T.W.G. van der Meer is hoogleraar Politicologie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam en sinds 2015 codirecteur van het Nationaal Kiezersonderzoek.

    Municipal amalgamations form a red thread through the history of local government in the Netherlands. With varying intensity, this country was continuously confronted with adjustments of the municipal scale. Where once the focus was rather one-sided on the minimum number of inhabitants of a municipality, we see that since the nineties questions were asked about the amalgamation policy. From now on a lack of administrative power had to be demonstrated before an amalgamation would be carried through. These critical remarks however didn’t lead to a downfall in the number of municipal amalgamations. Amalgamation and merger will always continue in the Netherlands. The Flemish policy on amalgamation appears to be quite different. Since the large-scale merger operation in 1976 Flanders was no more confronted with municipal amalgamations. The former Flemish government however, announced at its appointment in 2009 that it would encourage voluntary mergers of municipalities with financial and administrative incentives. The present Flemish government treads the same path. The incentives put in place by the former Flemish legislature are even increased. They even appear to bear fruit. In the provinces Limburg and East-Flanders several municipalities have indicated to investigate a merger. Some of them even have taken the principal decision to merger in the municipal councils involved. This article describes and compares the municipal amalgamation policies of the Netherlands and Flanders. The authors also investigate what both can learn from each other.


Prof. dr. Koenraad De Ceuninck
Prof. dr. K. De Ceuninck is politicoloog en hoogleraar bij het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek aan de Universiteit Gent.

Dr. Klaas Abma
Dr. K. Abma is programmamanager bij de gemeente Súdwest-Fryslân (Zuidwest-Friesland). In 2012 promoveerde hij aan de Open Universiteit bij Arno Korsten op een onderzoek naar het beoordelen van gemeenten.
Artikel

Campagneactiviteiten en -financiering van lokale partijen in Nederland

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden electoral campaigns, campaign financing, independent local lists, party subsidies, local elections
Auteurs Justin Bergwerff MSc en Dr. Hans Vollaard
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Electoral campaigning and its financing at the local level have been hardly studied in spite of the growing political significance of municipalities in the Netherlands. Local parties have been barely studied either, even though they gained more than 30 percent of the seats in the local elections of 2014. They have done so without any public subsidy, whereas subsidized national parties can and do support their local branches. This article examines which campaign activities local parties used to attract voters, how these activities were funded, and whether local parties perceived subsidies necessary and desirable. A survey among local parties held just after the local elections of 2014, indicates that their campaigns are by and large a traditional, low-cost affair. They are often not labor-intensive nor technology-intensive, despite the electoral effectiveness of micro-targeting and canvassing. Contributions from local councilors constitute the main source of finance. The survey also shows that transparency of campaign financing can count on widespread support among local parties. They also prefer a level playing field between local parties and local branches of national parties by providing both public subsidies or none, which is an important contribution to the discussion on the current legislative proposals on party financing at the local level.


Justin Bergwerff MSc
Justin Bergwerff MSc is financieel beleidsmedewerker aan het ministerie van Onderwijs, Cultuur en Wetenschap.

Dr. Hans Vollaard
Dr. Hans Vollaard is universitair docent Nederlandse en Europese politiek, Departement Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap, Universiteit Utrecht.

    Reflection and debate initiates academically inspired discussions on issues that are on the current policy agenda.


Professor Dr. Tom van der Meer
Professor Dr. Tom van der Meer is Professor of Political Science and Co-Director of the Dutch Parliamentary Election Survey at the University of Amsterdam
Artikel

Staat van de bestuurskunde

Samenvattend én persoonlijk slotakkoord

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2017
Auteurs Dr. Thomas Schillemans

Dr. Thomas Schillemans
Artikel

Het aantal zelfstandige bestuursorganen in Nederland 1993-2013

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2017
Trefwoorden Agencies, Organizational demography, Public management reform, Population ecology, Dutch government
Auteurs Prof. dr. Sandra van Thiel en Jesper Verheij MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In several countries the number of semi-autonomous agencies is under attack. The Dutch government has also presented plans to reduce the number of so-called ZBOs (zelfstandige bestuursorganen). But do public organizations like ZBOs actually die? Using population ecology theory we formulate a number of hypotheses on the survival and reform of ZBOs. These hypotheses are tested using secondary data on the number of ZBOs in The Netherlands in the past two decades. Results show that the absolute number of ZBOs has increased rather than decreased. Only seldom does a ZBO die. But ZBOs do experience many changes during their lifetime, such as mergers. The politicians’ plans seem targeted at improving their overview of all ZBOs. Whether the implementation of the plans will lead to that remains to be seen. Experiences in other countries do not confirm these expectations so far.


Prof. dr. Sandra van Thiel
Prof. dr. Sandra van Thiel is hoogleraar bestuurskunde aan de Radboud Universiteit.

Jesper Verheij MSc
Jesper Verheij MSc is beleidsmedewerker bij het ministerie van OCW.
Article

Democratische politiek: ‘minder, minder, minder’ of anders?

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 1 2017
Auteurs Frank Hendriks, Koen van der Krieken en Sabine van Zuydam
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article looks at indications and counterindications in Dutch democracy for the popular claim that citizens, while still valuing representative democracy, are fed up with representative politics. Using available large-scale surveys, citizen attitudes are analysed at the levels of specific political actors (politicians, officials), central political institutions (political parties, parliament, government) and the general system of representative democratic politics (the way it works in the Netherlands, with multiparty coalitions, etc). While specific legitimacy problems exist, the evidence for a general legitimacy crisis in Dutch democracy is comparatively weak and highly mixed. More specifically, the evidence suggests that Dutch citizens do not so much want less representative politics, but rather representative politics of a somewhat different kind: less exclusively organized via party-political channels; more geared at recognizable and accountable political authority. Dutch citizens want to seriously influence but not supplant selectionistic representative politics, the evidence suggests.


Frank Hendriks
Frank Hendriks is als hoogleraar comparative governance verbonden aan Tilburg University. Hij is gespecialiseerd in de vergelijkende analyse van democratische modellen en hervormingen. Hierover publiceerde hij onder meer Vital Democracy (Oxford University Press, 2010) en, meer toegespitst op Nederland, Democratie onder druk (Van Gennep, 2012).

Koen van der Krieken
Koen van der Krieken is als promovendus en onderzoeker verbonden aan Tilburg School of Governance (TSG). Hij werkt aan een dissertatie over het lokale referendum in Nederland. In 2015 schreef hij, in opdracht van het Ministerie van BZK, een rapport over heden, verleden en toekomst van de lokale referendumpraktijk in Nederland.

Sabine van Zuydam
Sabine van Zuydam is onderzoeker bij Tilburg School of Governance (TSG). In haar proefschrift onderzoekt zij wat lijsttrekkers in verkiezingen, ministers en fractieleiders geloofwaardig maakt in de ogen van burgers. Ze deed mede-onderzoek naar het Nederlandse burgemeestersambt, de vermaatschappelijking van overheidstaken en de rol van de raad bij controversiële besluitvorming.

    For aldermen in Dutch municipalities, ‘integrity’ increasingly seems to be an important factor causing their downfall. A lot of aldermen have resigned in the recent years because of ‘integrity’ and invariably local and national media were actively involved in this process. This article deals with the question of the role of the media in integrity affairs involving aldermen that have to resign. To answer this question, the authors analysed ten affairs that occurred in 2014 in which an alderman had to resigned (forced or voluntarily) because of integrity issues. The analysis shows that local media, regardless of how small they may be and how limited their means, often report extensively about integrity issues. In some cases, local media even act as accountability forums that call these aldermen to account. In other cases, the coverage in local media leads to further questions and calls for political accountability in the municipal council. Sometimes the media ‘merely’ report on the debates between the municipal council and the municipal board, but by doing so magnify the impact of an affair in the local community. In this way, the media fulfil their democratic role as watchdogs of local democracy, a role in which they bark loudly, often persistently and sometimes venomously about (alleged) integrity affairs.


Peter Schokker LLM MA
P. Schokker LLM MA is onderzoeker en adviseur bij het Bureau Integriteit BING.

Dr. Thomas Schillemans
Dr. T. Schillemans is universitair hoofddocent aan de Universiteit Utrecht bij het departement Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap (USBO).

    This essay contains a short history of the municipal and other administrative sciences in the Netherlands. This history is divided into seven lives. Each life has its own specific characteristics and approaches. The story starts in 1914 with the dissertation of Gerrit van Poelje and the aldermanship of Floor Wibaut (for the Dutch Labour Party) in Amsterdam. Nevertheless, the authors make a plea to view 1921 as the actual starting point, because it is the year of the introduction to municipal administration written by Van Poelje and the first Dutch academic magazine on municipal administration (‘Gemeentebestuur’). This means that we can prepare for the celebration of 100 years of (municipal) administrative sciences in 2021. A great challenge for all universities, but certainly for the Public Administration programme of the University of Twente, which is now celebrating its 40th anniversary. The challenge is to work on current topics such as the relationship between public administration and technology in smart, sustainable and resilient cities.


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

Lokale democratie doorgelicht: inleiding

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 4 2016
Auteurs Prof. dr. Bas Denters en Prof. dr. Marcel Boogers
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In recent years, attention has increasingly been focussing on the quality of local democracy. Through the transfer of central government tasks to the municipalities, the importance of local government for citizens in the Netherlands has increased. This also places higher demands on the way local democracy functions. For various reasons, it is not easy to meet these demands. The debate on the quality of local democracy can be reduced to two basic questions: what is local and what is democracy? Instead of answering these questions, the authors of the article (editors of this new series) demonstrate what knowledge is needed to do this. They outline broadly the agenda for a local democratic audit, for which this article is an introduction. After a short theoretical discussion of the importance of local democracy, the authors point out those knowledge gaps that still exist in their opinion. They do so on the basis of current research. After identifying the key relations in local democracy, they present an agenda for further research.


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

Prof. dr. Marcel Boogers
Prof. dr. M.J.G.J.A. Boogers is hoogleraar Innovatie en Regionaal Bestuur aan de Universiteit Twente, senior adviseur Openbaar Bestuur bij BMC en tevens redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Artikel

Hoe staat de lokale democratie in Nederland ervoor?

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 4 2016
Auteurs Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters en Drs. Vincent van Stipdonk
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Is local democracy in the Netherlands equipped for its mission? There is confusion and disagreement about the answer to this question. How people assess existing democratic practices is strongly influenced by one of the three main perspectives: representative democracy, participative (deliberative) democracy or ‘do-democracy’ (associative democracy). But to be able to have this discussion in the first place, empirical knowledge is required about the state of democracy at the local level. In this article (apart from the introduction, the first in a series on the local democratic audit) the authors bring together the available research data and organize these data with the help of David Easton’s system model: from input of citizens and civil society via throughput to output and finally feedback again in the political system. The research presented offers some insight in the state of local democracy, although it is not possible to give a final assessment. That depends on the perspective on democracy chosen, but it is also not possible because of the fragmented and incomplete nature of the research on local democracy in the Netherlands. The authors advocate contributing to these discussions with more empirical knowledge. The overview in this article shows that there is work to be done in this respect.


Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters
Prof. dr. K. Peters is zelfstandig onderzoeker en publicist en voor één dag in de week bijzonder hoogleraar Lokaal en regionaal bestuur aan de Universiteit Maastricht.

Drs. Vincent van Stipdonk
Drs. V.P. van Stipdonk is zelfstandig Raadgever & Redacteur en tevens redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.
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