Zoekresultaat: 111 artikelen

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Thema-artikel

De Frankfurter Schule en algoritmisch bestuur

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden algorithmic governance, enlightenment, Frankfurter Schule, public administration, technology critique
Auteurs Dr. Ringo Ossewaarde
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The Frankfurter Schule offers an interesting intellectual orientation for critical public administration that seeks to unmask problematic political-administrative power structures. It compels public administration scholars to reflect on the policy processes and bureaucratic structures of a technological society, and the legitimizing or criticizing role of public administration scholars in this. A critical public administration that is inspired by the Frankfurter Schule does not accept existing processes and structures. On the contrary, it contests them and uncovers them as a critique of domination, repression, reification, one-dimensionality, bias, erotic deficit and lack of creativity. It is focussed on identifying alternative, more humanizing and democratizing, futures. In this essay the significance of the Frankfurter Schule for critical public administration in technological society is explored. The development of algorithmic governance serves as a case to illustrate critical analysis, to reveal the essence of the Frankfurter Schule, and to show some of its contemporary relevance for critical public administration. Algorithmic governance is portrayed as a type of governance that reinforces existing policy processes and bureaucratic structures of technological society, and is unmasked by critical public administration scholars as a force of reification.


Dr. Ringo Ossewaarde
Dr. Ringo Ossewaarde is als universitair hoofddocent Bestuur, Samenleving en Technologie verbonden aan de Universiteit Twente.
Thema-artikel

Kritisch bestuurskundig onderwijs

Een pleidooi voor productieve subversiviteit

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Public Administration, critical theory, education, subversive
Auteurs Dr. Mark van Ostaijen en Dr. Shivant Jhagroe
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    By analysing the current self-presentation of educational programs, this article problematizes the dominating instrumental knowledge within Public Administration. By foregrounding ‘productive subversion’, the authors provide a perspective on more reflexive types of knowledge and methods, to re-value educational programs within Public Administration.


Dr. Mark van Ostaijen
Dr. M.A.C. van Ostaijen is universitair docent aan het Departement Bestuurskunde en Sociologie van de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Dr. Shivant Jhagroe
Dr. S. S. Jhagroe is universitair docent aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde, Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs, Universiteit Leiden.
Article

Still Consociational? Belgian Democracy, 50 Years After ‘The Politics of Accommodation’

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Belgium, consociational democracy, Lijphart, federalism, ethnolinguistic conflict
Auteurs Didier Caluwaerts en Min Reuchamps
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Despite the enduring importance of Lijphart’s work for understanding democracy in Belgium, the consociational model has come under increasing threat. Owing to deep political crises, decreasing levels of trust in elites, increasing levels of ethnic outbidding and rising demands for democratic reform, it seems as if Lijphart’s model is under siege. Even though the consociational solution proved to be very capable of transforming conflict into cooperation in Belgian politics in the past, the question we raise in this article is whether and to what extent the ‘politics of accommodation’ is still applicable to Belgian democracy. Based on an in-depth analysis of the four institutional (grand coalition, proportionality, mutual veto rights and segmental autonomy) and one cultural (public passivity) criteria, we argue that consociational democracy’s very nature and institutional set-up has largely hollowed out its potential for future conflict management.


Didier Caluwaerts
Didier Caluwaerts is professor of political science at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. His research deals with democratic governance and innovation in deeply divided societies. With Min Reuchamps, he has recently published “The Legitimacy of Citizen-led Deliberative Democracy: The G1000 in Belgium” (Routledge, 2018).

Min Reuchamps
Min Reuchamps is professor of political science at the Université catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain). His teaching and research interests are federalism and multi-level governance, democracy and its different dimensions, relations between language(s) and politics and in particular the role of metaphors, as well as participatory and deliberative methods.
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.

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.
Vrij artikel

Access_open Democratie ligt op straat

Dilemma’s en kansen in de interactie tussen overheid en burger

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden citizen participation, democratic legitimacy, street-level interactions, informal citizenship, contestation
Auteurs Dr. Nanke Verloo
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The goal of citizens participation increases the moments of contact between politicians, policy makers, welfare professionals and citizens. The shared responsibility for local decision making is not an easy task. Often conflicts emerge between parties with opposing needs and interests. Citizens oppose decisions or organize protest. These moments do not only challenge the goal of participation, they also jeopardize the quality of democracy. The democratic value of contentious moments, however, is often neglected. How can public professionals deal with the dilemma’s and chances that emerge during interactions that happen unexpectedly at the street-level? I answer that question by applying the agonistic approach to democracy to the action repertoire of public professionals dealing with conflict. A dramaturgical analysis of contentious interactions provides insights in how we can recognize and acknowledge contentious citizenship.


Dr. Nanke Verloo
Dr. N. Verloo is universitair docent en onderzoeker bij de afdeling Geografie, Planologie en Internationale Ontwikkelingsstudies van de Universiteit van Amsterdam.
Artikel

Over Rousseau, goede burgers en de participatiesamenleving

Een normatieve analyse van het nieuwe contractdenken van de Nederlandse overheid door de ogen van een klassieke contractdenker

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden Beleidsevaluatie, Burgerschap, Participatiesamenleving, Rousseau, Sociaal contract
Auteurs Dr. Yvonne Kleistra
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the Netherlands good citizenship has become a topic of increased importance on the government agenda since the murder of Pim Fortuyn. The author assesses the effectiveness of the Dutch citizenship policies within the context of the broader policy framework of the so-called participatory society (participatiesamenleving) or do-democracy (doe-democratie). The evaluative analysis consists of two parts. In the first part the changing ideas concerning good citizenship are identified as well as the normative assumptions that are at the basis of Dutch citizenship policies. In the second part, the potential of current policies, and in particular the ideas that gave rise to creating a new social contract between government and society are assessed. To this end some key aspects of the new contract thinking of the Dutch government are contrasted with the ideas of Jean-Jacques Rousseau. The findings show that the current strive for tangible agreements on citizen behavior and civic duties is at odds with the main principles of classic contract theory. This leads to the conclusion that the new contractualism that is at the basis of the Dutch citizen policies should rather be seen as a threat to a stable society than as a building block for good citizenship.


Dr. Yvonne Kleistra
Dr. Yvonne Kleistra is werkzaam als universitair docent bij het Dual PhD Centre van de Universiteit Leiden.
Article

Split-Ticket Voting in Belgium

An Analysis of the Presence and Determinants of Differentiated Voting in the Municipal and Provincial Elections of 2018

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden split-ticket voting, local elections, voting motives, Belgium, PR-system
Auteurs Tony Valcke en Tom Verhelst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article tackles the particular issue of split-ticket voting, which has been largely overlooked in Belgian election studies thus far. We contribute to the literature by answering two particular research questions: (1) to what extent and (2) why do voters cast a different vote in the elections for the provincial council as compared to their vote in the elections for the municipal council?
    The article draws on survey data collected via an exit poll in the ‘Belgian Local Elections Study’, a research project conducted by an inter-university team of scholars.
    Our analysis shows that nearly 45% of the total research population cast a split-ticket vote in the local elections of 2018. However, this number drops to one out of four if we only consider a homogenous party landscape at both levels by excluding the numerous votes for ‘local’ lists (which occur mostly at the municipal level). This finding underlines the importance of accounting for the electoral and institutional context of the different electoral arenas in research on split-ticket voting in PR systems. In the Belgian context, split-ticket voting in 2018 also differed between the different parties and regions. Furthermore, it was encouraged by a higher level of education and familiarity with particular candidates. This candidate-centred and strategic voting was matched by party identification and the urban municipal context favouring straight-ticket voting. Other factors such as region, a rural municipal context and preferential voting seemed more relevant to determine voting for local parties than using the instrument of split-ticket votes as such.


Tony Valcke
Tony Valcke is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences of Ghent University (Belgium). He is a member of the Centre for Local Politics (CLP) and coordinator of the Teacher Training Department. His research, publications and educational activities focus on elections and democratic participation/innovation, (the history of) political institutions and (local) government reform, political elites and leadership, citizenship (education).

Tom Verhelst
Tom Verhelst is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at Ghent University (Belgium) and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Political Science at Maastricht University (the Netherlands). His research focuses on the Europeanisation of local government (with a particular interest for the regulatory mobilisation of local government in EU decision-making processes) and on the role and position of the local council in Belgium and the Netherlands (with a particular interest for local council scrutiny).
Thema

De raad in beraad

Een vergelijking en evaluatie van de formele hervormingen ter versterking van de gemeenteraad in Vlaanderen en Nederland

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 3 2019
Auteurs Dr. Tom Verhelst, Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters en Prof. dr. Koenraad De Ceuninck
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Until 2002, local government in Flanders and the Netherlands had a monistic approach. In both systems, the city council was formally the head of the board. However, due to the interplay of factors and evolutions, the influence of the council in practice was increasing. This contribution compares and evaluates the institutional reforms that have been implemented in Flanders and the Netherlands over the past decades in an attempt to reassess the role and position of the council. While Flanders opted for more limited reforms within the existing monistic system (e.g. its own chairman for the council, a special committee for intermunicipal cooperation, a procedure for restoring structural unmanageability), the Netherlands opted with dualism for a radical personnel and functional separation between council and board. Although the reforms in Flanders often seem half-hearted and councilors in the Netherlands attribute more influence to themselves, research also shows that the revaluation of the council in the Netherlands is (still) incomplete too. This theme will undoubtedly remain on the political agenda in the coming years. The authors are thinking of the development of a better statute for council members, or the functioning of the council as a democratic watchdog of the network society.


Dr. Tom Verhelst
Dr. T. Verhelst is postdoctoraal medewerker bij het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek (vakgroep politieke wetenschappen) van de Universiteit Gent.

Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters
Prof. dr. C.E. Peters is zelfstandig onderzoeker en publicist, bijzonder hoogleraar Lokaal en regionaal bestuur aan de Universiteit Maastricht en redactielid van Bestuurswetenschappen.

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

De stille revolutie in sociaalliberale waarden en het verzet uit conservatief-culturele hoek

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden Populism, Populist parties, Cultural values, Democracy, Culture war
Auteurs Dr. Claartje Brons
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this feature authors review recently published books on subjects of interest to readers of Beleid en Maatschappij.


Dr. Claartje Brons
Dr. Claartje Brons is lid van de redactie van Beleid en Maatschappij.
Artikel

Access_open Voorbij de controverse: het Nederlandse neoliberalisme als onderwerp van onderzoek

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden Neoliberalism, The Netherlands, Intellectual history, Political history, Essentially contested concepts
Auteurs Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen en Dr. Bram Mellink
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The word neoliberalism has often been the object of fierce controversy in the Dutch public debate. Prominent intellectuals have equated neoliberalism with extremism and fundamentalism, with some going as far as calling it a ‘totalitarian faith’. The opposite camp in the debate has argued that neoliberalism is largely a self-invented bogeyman of the left, a swearword used by critics to engage in an intellectual witch-hunt. Of course, neoliberalism is not the only social science term suffering from a polemical status. Common concepts such as populism, socialism, nationalism or conservatism have given rise to similar lasting disagreements and comparable accusations of their derogatory use. What does appear to be exceptional about neoliberalism in the Dutch debate, is that very few conceptual and historical studies have been published on the subject. While the word neoliberalism is commonly employed in Dutch mainstream social science, many scholars seem to use the term without much further qualification. This paper explores the controversy and looks for ways to proceed beyond it. Drawing on a recent wave of international scholarship, it outlines an ideational approach to neoliberalism. After tracing the origins of the term neoliberalism, it closes with a preliminary example of an ideational analysis of Dutch neoliberalism.


Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen
Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen is Postdoc onderzoeker aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Maatschappij- en Gedragswetenschappen, Programmagroep: Geographies of Globalizations.

Dr. Bram Mellink
Dr. Bram Mellink is postdoc onderzoeker aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Capaciteitsgroep Geschiedenis.
Article

Split Offer and Homogeneous Response in Belgium

The Conceptual and Empirical Limitations of (De)Nationalization

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden (de-)nationalization, voting behaviour, party offer, voter response, methodological nationalism
Auteurs Luana Russo, Kris Deschouwer en Tom Verthé
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    By examining the Belgian case, this article aims to show that methodological nationalism is strongly present in the literature on nationalization of party offer and voting behaviour. In nationalization studies, Belgium is often presented as a typical example of a denationalized country. This is true for the party offer, as it is de facto split between the two language groups since the 1980s, and therefore also voter response at the national level. However, voter response within each separate subnational party system is very homogeneous and shows interesting differences between these party systems that inform us about important electoral dynamics. We argue, on the basis of our results, that rather than stretching the concept of nationalization, it is preferable and justified to treat the concepts of nationalization of the party offer and homogenization of voter response as analytically distinct and not as two sides of the same coin.


Luana Russo
Luana Russo, Maastricht University.

Kris Deschouwer
Kris Deschouwer, Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Tom Verthé
Tom Verthé, Ghent University & Vrije Universiteit Brussel.
Article

Fiscal Consolidation in Federal Belgium

Collective Action Problem and Solutions

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden fiscal consolidation, fiscal policy, federalism, intergovernmental relations, High Council of Finance
Auteurs Johanna Schnabel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Fiscal consolidation confronts federal states with a collective action problem, especially in federations with a tightly coupled fiscal regime such as Belgium. However, the Belgian federation has successfully solved this collective action problem even though it lacks the political institutions that the literature on dynamic federalism has identified as the main mechanisms through which federal states achieve cooperation across levels of government. This article argues that the regionalization of the party system, on the one hand, and the rationalization of the deficit problem by the High Council of Finance, on the other, are crucial to understand how Belgium was able to solve the collective action problem despite its tightly coupled fiscal regime and particularly high levels of deficits and debts. The article thus emphasizes the importance of compromise and consensus in reducing deficits and debts in federal states.


Johanna Schnabel
School of Politics and International Relations, University of Kent, Rutherford College, Canterbury CT2 7NX, United Kingdom.

    In this feature authors review recently published books on subjects of interest to readers of Beleid en Maatschappij.


Dr. Duco Bannink
Dr. Duco Bannink is universitair hoofddocent bij de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
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.
Article

Consensus Democracy and Bureaucracy in the Low Countries

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden consensus democracy, bureaucracy, governance system, Lijphart, policymaking
Auteurs Frits van der Meer, Caspar van den Berg, Charlotte van Dijck e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Taking Lijphart’s work on consensus democracies as our point of departure, we signal a major shortcoming in Lijphart’s focus being almost exclusively on the political hardware of the state structure, leaving little attention for the administrative and bureaucratic characteristics of governance systems. We propose to expand the Lijphart’s model which overviews structural aspects of the executive and the state with seven additional features of the bureaucratic system. We argue that these features are critical for understanding the processes of policymaking and service delivery. Next, in order to better understand the functioning of the Netherlands and Belgium as consensus democracies, we provide a short analysis of the historical context and current characteristics of the political-administrative systems in both countries.


Frits van der Meer
Frits van der Meer, Professor Institute Public Administration, Leiden University.

Caspar van den Berg
Caspar van den Berg, Campus Fryslân, University of Groningen.

Charlotte van Dijck
Charlotte van Dijck, PhD Fellow Research Foundation Flanders (FWO), KU Leuven Public Governance Institute.

Gerrit Dijkstra
Gerrit Dijkstra, Senior Lecturer, Leiden University.

Trui Steen
Trui Steen, Professor, KU Leuven Public Governance Institute.
Article

Access_open Do Characteristics of Consociational Democracies Still Apply to Belgian Parties?

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Belgium, political parties, party membership, political participation, political representation
Auteurs Emilie Van Haute en Bram Wauters
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Belgium has long been described as a typical case of a consociational or consensus democracy. This article aims at identifying whether political parties in Belgium share the internal characteristics of parties in consensus democracies: passive mass memberships, the importance of purposive and material incentives for joining, and representation of a clear subculture in the social and attitudinal profiles of their members and via overlapping memberships with related organizations. We mobilize longitudinal party membership data and party member surveys conducted in three different time periods. We show that pillar parties still exercise their role of mobilization and representation of societal segments, but these segments tend to become smaller over time. New parties offer alternative options of mobilization and representation, although not always in line with the specific institutional arrangements of consociational democracy.


Emilie Van Haute
Emilie Van Haute, Cevipol, Université libre de Bruxelles.

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters, Research Group GASPAR, Ghent University.
Article

Transformative Welfare Reform in Consensus Democracies

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden consensus democracy, welfare state, social investment, transformative reform, Belgium and the Netherlands
Auteurs Anton Hemerijck en Kees van Kersbergen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article takes up Lijphart’s claim that consensus democracy is a ‘kinder, gentler’ form of democracy than majoritarian democracy. We zoom in on contemporary welfare state change, particularly the shift towards social investment, and argue that the kinder, gentler hypothesis remains relevant. Consensus democracies stand out in regard to the extent to which their political institutions help to overcome the politically delicate intricacies of governing for the long term. We theorize the features that can help to solve the problem of temporal commitment in democracy through processual mechanisms and illustrate these with short case studies of the contrasting welfare state reform experiences in the Netherlands and Belgium.


Anton Hemerijck
Anton Hemerijck is Professor of Political Science and Sociology at the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence, Italy.

Kees van Kersbergen
Kees van Kersbergen is Professor of Comparative Politics at the Department of Political Science of Aarhus University, Denmark.
Artikel

Access_open HASHTAG POLITIE

Hoe politieagenten omgaan met waardeconflicten die ontstaan door sociale media

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 3 2018
Auteurs Prof. dr. Gjalt de Graaf en Prof. dr. Albert Meijer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Social media changes society and causes new dilemmas in local government. Little is known about the nature of these conflicts and the way government organizations deal with them. Therefore the authors of this article have carried out empirical research into the manner in which police officers deal with value conflicts concerning the use of social media. Their research shows that the well-known conflicts in the literature between effectiveness and efficiency and between effectiveness and legality were also dominant in this case, but that many more conflicts than are known from other studies concerned transparency and participation. In addition they discovered that the bias strategy was often used, which suggests that a conservative response is preferable in a situation with a lot of dynamics. In this way the research shows how government officials deal with the tension between a stable organization and a dynamic environment and look for appropriate forms of coping at this specific interface. The authors stress in their recommendations that the further strengthening of the learning ability of organizations deserves attention: not just to find the right way to deal with value conflicts, but to be able to find new ways to deal with the new conflicts that arise.


Prof. dr. Gjalt de Graaf
Prof. dr. G. de Graaf is hoogleraar Integriteit van Academisch Onderwijs aan de Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit te Amsterdam en redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Prof. dr. Albert Meijer
Prof. dr. A.J. Meijer is hoogleraar Publieke Innovatie aan de Universiteit Utrecht en redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

    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.
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