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Transparantie in de EU-Raad

Onvermijdelijk en onmisbaar? Onverzadelijk en onuitvoerbaar?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden transparency, Council of the EU, access to documents, democratic legitimacy
Auteurs Dr. Maarten Hillebrandt
Samenvatting

    The democratic deficit is generally observed to be one of the largest challenges facing the European Union. This is in spite of the fact that the member states introduced transparency in 1992 to address this legitimacy problem. This article asks why, after several decades, the transparency policy has still not delivered on its promise. In doing so, it bases itself on new empirical data that was collected in the context of a recently presented dissertation (Hillebrandt, 2017), while drawing a strict distinction between the empirical policy change question and the normative desirability question. From a longitudinal comparative analysis, a differentiated empirical image arises. On the one hand, a clear enhancement of legislative transparency can be discerned; on the other hand, a plurality of transparency-evasive practices has emerged in the area of non-legislative decision-making. This equivocal image supports contrasting normative responses, according to which transparency is respectively cast as an indispensable ideal, a fiction, or a solution in search of a problem.


Dr. Maarten Hillebrandt
Dossier

De Europese vakbeweging en de vormgeving van sociaal beleid

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Social Europe, European Union, Social policy, Trade unions, ETUC
Auteurs Drs. Saskia Boumans
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The European project currently faces not only an economic crisis, but a moral one as well. The economic growth model of social justice combined with market-oriented policies, also referred to as the European social model has lost much of its meaning after ten years of austerity and financial calamities. In 2012 ECB President Draghi says in the Wall Street Journal that the European social model is “gone”, a thing of the past. While only a couple of years later the European Pillar of Social Rights is put in place. What is happening with ‘Social Europe’? And how do trade unions, as a historical motor of social policy in the member states, relate to the European social model, especially since the financial crisis. This article deals with the position of trade unions vis-à-vis European social policy and the European institutions. The European social model, economic governance and the collective bargaining system are discussed as examples of post-crisis European social policy. It will be argued that although the European Commission gives institutional space to social policy and to a role for trade unions, it has always been subordinate to economic integration. And moreover that the recent economic crisis is used at the European level to obtain almost complete control over social policy in the member states.


Drs. Saskia Boumans
Drs. Saskia Boumans werkt als promovendus bij AIAS-HSI (UvA) aan een onderzoek naar werkgeversorganisaties in collectieve onderhandelingen, en heeft de afgelopen vijftien jaar voor de vakbeweging gewerkt.
Dossier

De aanpak van belastingontwijking door de EU: gerichte maatregelen zonder structurele verandering.

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Tax, EU/European Union, Corporate taxation, Tax avoidance, Tax policy
Auteurs Indra Römgens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    According to the outgoing European Commissioner Pierre Moscovici, the European Union (EU) has made more progress in tackling tax avoidance and evasion in the last five years than in the twenty years before that. This article argues that although several targeted measures have indeed been adopted, such as automatic exchange of tax rulings and limitations on interest deductions, this has not led to a structural change in EU corporate tax policies, nor in underlying power relations. The article discusses the politics of a number of recent policy developments related to tax avoidance and evasion by transnational corporations. It argues that the adoption of targeted measures, and the simultaneous stalling of more comprehensive approaches – in terms of tax transparency or a common consolidated corporate tax base – can be explained by recent tax controversies, international politics, and the dynamics within and between EU institutions. Particular attention is paid to the role of the European Parliament that is formally limited, but still houses progressive forces that have continuously pushed for a clampdown on tax avoidance. Finally, the article pleads for more transparent EU decision-making, specifically concerning discussions with and within the Council, in order to improve the democratic legitimacy of EU corporate tax policies and processes.


Indra Römgens
MSc Indra Römgens is Promovendus aan de Roskilde Universiteit in Denemarken en de Radboud Universiteit in Nijmegen.
Dossier

Access_open Uitdijende financiële macht: de monetaire orde van de ECB

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Auteurs Rodrigo Fernandez, Reijer Hendrikse en David Hollanders
Auteursinformatie

Rodrigo Fernandez
Dr. Rodrigo Fernandez is postdoc aan de KU Leuven en senior onderzoeker bij SOMO.

Reijer Hendrikse
Dr. Reijer Hendrikse is Postdoctoraal onderzoeker aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

David Hollanders
Dr. David Hollanders is redactiesecretaris van Beleid en Maatschappij.
Dossier

De schuldencrisis in de eurozone: oorzaken, aanpak en implicaties

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Eurozone crisis, Financialization, Bail-outs, Austerity, Banking union, Quantitative easing
Auteurs Dr. Henk Overbeek
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Ten years ago, now, the Eurozone began to shake on its foundations. This article traces the genesis of the crisis and the present state of affairs. As to the causes of the global financial crisis in 2008, I argue that contrary to common understanding, the financial crisis had its deeper causes in a decades old tendency towards crisis in the real economy, produced by the continuous overaccumulation of capital which can only return profits by undertaking speculative short-term investments (a phenomenon known as ‘financialisation’). I then trace how the global financial crisis morphed into a crisis of public deficits and debt in 2010-2011, particularly in the Eurozone. Three factors are shown to be responsible: financialization, design faults in the European monetary union, and the neo-mercantilist strategy of especially Germany and the Netherlands. The paper next looks at the five main traits of the policy responses in the Eurozone: bailing out governments and banks through creating emergency funds; imposition of austerity and budget discipline for member state governments; attempting to create and complete a Eurozone banking union; subsequently the European Central Bank engaged on an unprecedented scale in ‘quantitative easing’; and finally, institutional reform in an attempt to repair the most pressing design faults of the EMU. The paper concludes that the underlying structural factors leading up to the crisis have only been addressed incompletely: the overaccumulation of capital continues, the completion of the banking union is in an impasse, quantitative easing has mostly just intensified financialization by pushing up asset prizes, and institutional reform has taken the form of a fundamentally undemocratic attempt at monetary and political union by stealth. The broader legitimacy of the European project has been substantially undermined, and Europe is not in a better position than eight years ago in case of a new global crisis.


Dr. Henk Overbeek
Henk Overbeek is Emeritus Hoogleraar Internationale betrekkingen aan de afdeling Bestuurswetenschap en Politicologie van de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
Artikel

Leren en werken voor vluchtelingen: beleid en interventies in drie grote gemeenten.

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Refugees, Asylum seekers, Labour market integration, Participation, Local integration policies
Auteurs Dr. Jeanine Klaver, Prof. dr. Jaco Dagevos, Dr. Rianne Dekker e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Municipalities have increasingly adjusted their policies in order to better respond to the problematic social and economic participation of permit holders. The core elements within the chosen policies seem to consist of an early activation, combining language and professional training, and providing customization in the support of these newcomers. In this article, this policy change has been studied in the municipalities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht. It becomes clear that a more successful approach only succeeds when permit holders are offered additional and tailored support. For all three municipalities, this means that more permit holders are reached by the available support measures and that local policy makers can better respond to individual needs and possibilities. In addition, these municipalities pay more attention for sustainable labour market participation. At the same time, it is evident that no rapid successes are being made with this new course. In particular, more vulnerable permit holders, including those with low levels of education and women, are not always reached by municipalities. We also see that many of these newcomers must be supported for a long time, even if after have found a place on the labour market. Therefore, evidence suggests that without additional measures there is a good chance that the perspective on social and economic participation for many permit holders in the Netherlands will be extremely limited.


Dr. Jeanine Klaver
Dr. Jeanine Klaver werkt bij Regioplan Beleidsonderzoek.

Prof. dr. Jaco Dagevos
Prof. dr. Jaco Dagevos werkt bij de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam en het Sociaal en Cultureel Planbureau.

Dr. Rianne Dekker
Dr. Rianne Dekker werkt bij de Universiteit Utrecht.

Dr. Karin Geuijen
Dr. Karin Geuijen werkt bij de Universiteit Utrecht.

Dr. Arend Odé
Dr. Arend Odé werkt bij Regioplan Beleidsonderzoek.

    An element of the theme of the VNG 2018 ‘Across boundaries’ annual conference in Maastricht is the necessity for Dutch politicians and administrators to push existing boundaries. In many cases this will involve a national border, which is closer in the region than in the national administrative center in The Hague. More than half of the twelve Dutch provinces have national borders, so cross-border cooperation is a regular phenomenon. National or EU regulations and subsidies may help to realize policy goals that are found important at a regional or local level, but when policy crosses national borders in practice it is also confronted with other ‘European’ boundaries. If there are incomprehensible, impracticable or conflicting rules, there is tension between common European policy and Dutch decentralization. Therefore this essay focuses on the control that the European Union has as an administrative challenge. It first discusses the shaky European consciousness and then the actions taken to break this vicious circle.


Dr. Mendeltje van Keulen
Dr. M. van Keulen is lector Europese Studies bij de Haagse Hogeschool. Van 2011 tot 2017 was zij griffier Europese Zaken bij de Tweede Kamer.

Mijke Houwerzijl
Prof. mr. Mijke Houwerzijl is hoogleraar Arbeidsrecht aan de Universiteit van Tilburg en bijzonder hoogleraar Europees en rechtsvergelijkend arbeidsrecht aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.

    In this feature authors discuss recent research findings that are of interest to readers of Beleid en Maatschappij.


Prof. dr. Ewald Engelen
Prof. dr. Ewald Engelen is redactielid van Beleid en Maatschappij.

    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 recent decades, the Dutch labour market has become more flexible. Flexible labour contracts enable firms to adjust employment to a changing market environment and to competitive pressures. Almost without exception, academic studies on the drivers behind the use of flexible labour contracts at the company level, are motivated by competitive pressures. However, companies may be susceptible to institutional pressures as well. Based on a survey among more than 650 managers in the Netherlands, we conclude that firms are vulnerable to institutional (mimetic) forces. This finding has several implications for policy-making and labour flexibility research.


Fabian Dekker
Artikel

De parlementarisatie van Europees economisch beleid

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2016
Trefwoorden European Parliament, politicisation, economic policy, democratic deficit
Auteurs Dr. Adriaan Schout, Jan Marinus Wiersma, Mariana Gomes Neto e.a.
Samenvatting

    Since the euro crisis the EU has seen a deepening of integration with a new framework for economic and budgetary coordination. With the new framework reforms in pension or housing market are coordinated at the European level. This comprehensive set of rules and monitoring mechanisms has revived the debate on Europe’s democratic deficit. This article describes how the European Parliament (EP) tries to fill the democratic void in economic governance. The EP’s formal role is limited, but by using mostly informal mechanisms the EP is setting in motion an incremental process towards further control. This development should be seen in light of a political battle on the interpretation of the new rules, which has accordingly become increasingly politicized. The Dutch have always wanted a European economic policy on the basis of technocracy and rules, but at the same time Europe’s political union draws ever closer.


Dr. Adriaan Schout

Jan Marinus Wiersma

Mariana Gomes Neto

David Bokhorst


Bas Eickhout
Bas Eickhout is namens GroenLinks lid van het Europees Parlement.

Jasper Blom
Jasper Blom is directeur van Bureau de Helling, het wetenschappelijk bureau van GroenLinks.


Prof. dr. Maarten van Ham
Prof. dr. Maarten van Ham is hoogleraar stedelijke vernieuwing aan de Delft University of Technology.
Discussie

Onvermijdelijke verdragswijziging vereist een ander EU-referendum

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2016
Auteurs Adriaan Schout, Jan-Marinus Wiersma en David Bokhorst PhD
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie


Adriaan Schout
Europa Coördinator bij het Clingendael Instituut

Jan-Marinus Wiersma
Senior Visiting Fellow bij het Clingendael Instituut

David Bokhorst PhD
PhD Candidate - Universiteit van Amsterdam
Artikel

De rollen van de praktijkonderzoeker: getuige-deskundige, sociaal ingenieur en verhalenverteller

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2015
Trefwoorden social policy, knowledge utilisation, expert witness, social engineer, storyteller
Auteurs Prof. dr. Godfried Engbersen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article shows the relevance of Burawoy’s analytical categories on the division of scientific labour to analyse the interactions between science and practice. It argues that social scientists need to combine the roles of expert witness, social engineer and storyteller in order to develop a productive relationship with policy makers. It also emphasises the relevance of a permanent dialogue between social scientists and policy makers. However, the analysis disagrees with Burawoy’s view that knowledge is based on a consensus between scientists and their publics (consensual knowledge). Burawoy underestimates the risk of a politicisation of science inherent to a close relationship with various ‘publics’. The arguments presented in this article are based on the reception of a research project on labour migration from Central and Eastern Europe. This was a hybrid research project in which different actors participated: the Erasmus University, nine Dutch municipalities, the national government and a Dutch knowledge center on urban issues.


Prof. dr. Godfried Engbersen
Prof. dr. G.B.M. Engbersen is hoogleraar Algemene Sociologie aan de Erasmus Universiteit en lid van de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid

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


Dr. Virginie Mamadouh
Dr. Virginie Mamadouh is universitair hoofddocent politieke en culturele geografie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam. Zij is hoofdredacteur van het tijdschrift Geopolitics, te raadplegen via www.tandfonline.com/toc/fgeo20/current.
Discussie

Omgaan met een sub-optimale unie

de inzichten en frustraties van Fritz Scharpf

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2014
Auteurs Prof. Dr. Ben Crum
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

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


Prof. Dr. Ben Crum
Prof. dr. Ben Crum is hoogleraar politicologie bij de afdeling Bestuurswetenschap en Politicologie van de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam en codirecteur van het Amsterdam Centre for Contemporary European Studies (ACCESS EUROPE).

    This paper attempts a normative assessment of the input and output-oriented legitimacy of the present euro-rescuing regime on the basis of policy analyses examining the causes of present crises, the available policy options, and the impact of the policies actually chosen. Concluding that the regime lacks input-oriented legitimacy and that its claim to output-oriented legitimacy is ambivalent at best, the paper explores potential – majoritarian or unilateral – exits from the present institutional constellation that is characterized by the synthesis of a non-democratic expertocracy and an extremely asymmetric intergovernmental bargaining system.


Prof. dr. Fritz W. Scharpf
Prof. dr. Fritz W. Scharpf is emeritus director van het Max Planck Institute for the Studies of Societies.
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