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20 jaar Verantwoordingsdag: Inzicht voor Kamercommissies

Hoe inhoudsanalyse inzicht geeft in prestatiegegevensgebruik door Kamerleden

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden performance information, accountability, Parliament, annual reports, Performance-based Budgeting
Auteurs Dr. Sjoerd Keulen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The 20th Accountability Day of the Netherlands House of Representatives is a fitting occasion to investigate whether Dutch Members of Parliament use performance information (PI). Performance information used by managers and politicians is a basic assumption for managing and guiding Performance-based Budgeting. Ironically, based on a literature review on performance use, we know that politicians and especially parliamentarians do not use performance information for decision making or scrutiny. This is specifically so when PI reports are long. Using the framework of accountability of Bovens (2007) and using content analysis of the questions, motions and debates of the Standing Committees on the annual reports, this article shows that MPs use performance information in all phases (informing, debating, sanctions). Contradicting earlier research on parliamentarians, we found that they use annual reports and reports of the Court of Audit as their main sources in the debates. This article shows that the use of PI in parliament is steadily rising. The growing importance of performance information for accountability is further illustrated by the strengthening of the accountability forum.


Dr. Sjoerd Keulen
Dr. S.J. Keulen is onderzoeker bij de Algemene Rekenkamer en universitair docent Bestuurskunde aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Dossier

Access_open Politiek van ons allemaal: reactie op de Kamerbrief van minister Ollongren over vrouwen in het openbaar bestuur

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden political representation, Women, Dutch politics, Political recruitment
Auteurs Dr. Liza Mügge en Zahra Runderkamp MA
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Celebrating 100 years of women’s suffrage in 2019 is an excellent reason to reinvigorate the debate on the position of women in politics and public administration in the Netherlands. In this essay, we look at trends and figures, as well as discuss the measures that Minister of the Interior and Kingdom Relations Kajsa Ollongren puts forward in her recent letter to Parliament: (1) inclusive selection and selection procedures; (2) actively inviting and recruiting candidates; and (3) good equipment for political office. We try to inform the debate about the position of women in politics with new insights and knowledge from academic research.


Dr. Liza Mügge
Dr. Liza Mügge is universitair hoofddocent politicologie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Zahra Runderkamp MA
Zahra Runderkamp is promovenda politicologie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.
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.
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).
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.
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.
Article

Access_open What Is Left of the Radical Right?

The Economic Agenda of the Dutch Freedom Party 2006-2017

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden radical right-wing populist parties, economic policies, welfare chauvinism, populism, deserving poor
Auteurs Simon Otjes
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article examines the economic agenda of the Dutch Freedom Party. It finds that this party mixes left-wing and right-wing policy positions. This inconsistency can be understood through the group-based account of Ennser-Jedenastik (2016), which proposes that the welfare state agenda of radical right-wing populist parties can be understood in terms of populism, nativism and authoritarianism. Each of these elements is linked to a particular economic policy: economic nativism, which sees the economic interest of natives and foreigners as opposed; economic populism, which seeks to limit economic privileges for the elite; and economic authoritarianism, which sees the interests of deserving and undeserving poor as opposed. By using these different oppositions, radical right-wing populist parties can reconcile left-wing and right-wing positions.


Simon Otjes
Assistant professor of political science at Leiden University and researcher at the Documentation Centre Dutch Political Parties of Groningen University.
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.
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.
Article

Verticale politieke cumul in de Lage Landen: evolutie en verklaringen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden Cumul des mandats, Multiple office-holding, Members of parliament, Local representatives, Central-local relations
Auteurs Nicolas Van de Voorde
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Studies have shown that multiple office-holding, a practice that denotes the simultaneous exercise of any directly elected municipal mandate and parliamentary seat, is more commonplace in European national parliaments than expected. However, research in Belgium, and especially in the Netherlands, is scarce and extremely fragmented. Therefore, our analysis provides a systematic comparison between the Low Countries with a longitudinal focus. In the first part of the paper, the frequency of the practice is described and its evolution in the last two decades tracked. In the second part, we provide aggregated explanations for the identified discrepancy. Indeed, our results show that after the most recent elections, more than 80% of all Belgian members of parliament held a local mandate, and this percentage increased by 10% during our reference period. In contrast, 9 out of 150 members of the Dutch Second Chamber were combining several offices at the beginning of their national mandate, while the degree of cumulards remained stable. Unexpectedly, the legislative framework and the party regulations are not the source of this deviation, as they are almost identical in both countries. We argue that the difference can be attributed to the role and position of the local government, the political culture and the electoral system.


Nicolas Van de Voorde
Nicolas Van de Voorde is als FWO-aspirant verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek aan de Universiteit Gent. Zijn onderzoek is gericht op het fenomeen cumul des mandats in de Belgische context.

Dr. Alexandre Afonso
Dr. Alexandre Afonso is assistant professor aan de Universiteit van Leiden.

    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).
Article

Vragen naar de bekende weg?

Een analyse van informatiebronnen waarop schriftelijke vragen over Europese zaken in de Nederlandse Tweede Kamer zijn gebaseerd

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 2 2016
Trefwoorden national parliaments, European Union, parliamentary questions, the Netherlands
Auteurs Rik de Ruiter, Jelmer Schalk en Yorick van Rijthoven
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This paper analyses the information sources members of the Dutch Lower House base their questions on with regard to EU affairs in the period 1995-2013. Knowledge of the type of information sources to base questions on is vital for determining what the conditions are under which members of national parliaments can scrutinize the decisions taken by the national government at the EU level. The involvement of national parliaments in EU affairs is according to many scholars a necessary condition for closing the democratic deficit of the European Union, especially when the turnout in elections for the European Parliament remains low and for national parliaments remains stable and relatively high. An original dataset is constructed including all sets of written parliamentary questions on EU affairs asked by Dutch MPs in the period 1995-2013, categorized by different types of information sources on which the question is based. These different categories of information sources are regressed with a variable measuring the Treaty changes impacting on the intensity of contact between MPs of different national parliaments and several variables measuring the characteristics of Dutch MPs and their parties. The findings indicate that Dutch MPs base their written questions primarily on coverage on EU affairs by national newspapers. Moreover, MPs are more likely to use sources rooted in a national context for asking questions when they are a member of a party with a negative attitude towards European integration. These findings imply that parliamentary control via written questions over the decisions of the national executive at the EU level can be strengthened by increasing national media coverage on EU affairs, allowing the EU public sphere to develop further in the future.


Rik de Ruiter
Rik de Ruiter is als universitair docent Bestuurskunde verbonden aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde van de Universiteit Leiden. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar politiek, beleid en bestuur van de Europese Unie.

Jelmer Schalk
Jelmer Schalk is als universitair docent bestuurskunde verbonden aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde van de Universiteit Leiden. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar publiek management, interorganisationele netwerken en sociale netwerkanalyse.

Yorick van Rijthoven
Yorick van Rijthoven (MSc.) is een recent afgestudeerd bestuurskundige aan de Universiteit Leiden en heeft zich gespecialiseerd in internationale en Europese bestuurskunde. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar o.a. interparlementaire samenwerking over EU-aangelegenheden, het EU-besluitvormingsproces en (internationaal) publiek management.
Artikel

Politieke fragmentatie in Nederlandse gemeenten

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 1 2016
Auteurs Mr. dr. Jan Lunsing en Prof. dr. Michiel Herweijer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    A gradual process of fragmentation is going on in the Dutch political landscape. This article first describes the political fragmentation (the number of parties in the parliament, the popularly elected body) of the Dutch municipalities after the local elections of march 2014. Next the authors address the background factors of political fragmentation. These factors are the task heaviness, the municipal size, the turnout at local elections and the administrative instability. Then they take up the consequences of political fragmentation. A high level of political fragmentation is accompanied by a somewhat higher absenteeism (so there is a little less ‘civil service power’), a somewhat higher debt per capita (so there are somewhat less financial reserves) and lower performance in the area of separate waste collection (an indication of a somewhat lower level of ‘civil society power’). The absence of an above average political fragmentation can be seen as an administrative resource. The hypothesis that municipalities with a higher level of political fragmentation are characterized by a higher number of administrative crises (early retiring administrators) could not be statistically accepted, nor (not yet) rejected.


Mr. dr. Jan Lunsing
Mr. dr. J.R. Lunsing is als onderzoeker en secretaris verbonden aan StiBaBo (Winsum). In mei 2015 promoveerde hij aan de Universiteit Twente bij Bas Denters en Michiel Herweijer op een proefschrift over de kloof tussen de burgers en het bestuur.

Prof. dr. Michiel Herweijer
Prof. dr. M. Herweijer is sinds 2011 als bijzonder hoogleraar verbonden aan de vakgroep bestuurskunde van de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen. Hij is directeur van de Noordelijke Rekenkamer en redacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Article

De wetgevende macht van de media?

Een kwantitatieve analyse van media-effecten op de behandeling van wetsvoorstellen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 4 2013
Trefwoorden media effects, legislation, policy process, lawmaking, Dutch politics, newspaper coverage
Auteurs Lotte Melenhorst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The media are a much-discussed subject in both the scientific and the public debate on the functioning of democracy. Nevertheless, there is relatively little empirical research on the effects of media on the most fundamental aspect of politics: the legislative process. However, this type of research is important because it helps us gain insight into the influence journalists exert. This study analyses the influence of media attention for bills on the legislative process in the Netherlands. A quantitative analysis of the newspaper coverage for recently discussed bills indicates that the parliamentary process is influenced by this coverage. This first study of media-effects on the Dutch legislative process suggests that more media-attention leads to the introduction of more amendments by both members of government and members of parliament.


Lotte Melenhorst
Lotte Melenhorst is promovenda bij het Instituut voor Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden. Haar onderzoek maakt deel uit van een door NWO gefinancierd VIDI-project over de relatie tussen media en politiek en concentreert zich op de rol van de media bij de totstandkoming van wetgeving.
Article

Hoe parlementsleden denken over de legitimiteit van quota: een Europese vergelijking

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2013
Trefwoorden gender quotas, affirmative action, political representation, Members of Parliament, comparative research
Auteurs Silvia Erzeel en Didier Caluwaerts
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Even though gender quotas are increasingly adopted, the legitimacy of such measures remains an issue of controversy. In this contribution, we ask how MPs, i.e. the key players in the implementation and adoption of quotas, think about affirmative action, and under which conditions they find quotas to be legitimate measures for improving gender equality. Our results reveal that much variation exists as to how MPs perceive the legitimacy of quotas. This variation plays out at both the individual and the macro level. Women and left-wing MPs consider quotas to be more legitimate than men and right-wing MPs. The openness of the parliamentary arena towards women’s movement proves to be an important condition for the positive evaluation of quotas. The broader electoral and parliamentary context only has a conditional effect: it influences female MPs’ assessment of quotas but not that of male legislators.


Silvia Erzeel
Silvia Erzeel is F.R.S.-FNRS postdoctoraal onderzoekster (chargée de recherche) aan het Institut de sciences politiques Louvain-Europe (ISPOLE) van de Université catholique de Louvain. Haar onderzoek handelt over politieke vertegenwoordiging, politieke partijen en gender.

Didier Caluwaerts
Didier Caluwaerts is als postdoctoraal onderzoeker van het FWO verbonden aan de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel, en als Fulbright Frank Boas Fellow aan het Ash Center for Democracy van Harvard University. Zijn onderzoek gaat over participatieve en deliberatieve democratie.
Article

Vertegenwoordiging van oude en nieuwe breuklijnen in de Lage Landen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 3 2012
Trefwoorden group representation, members of parliament, Low Countries, class, gender, ethnicity
Auteurs Karen Celis en Bram Wauters
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article investigates whether group-based politics is still relevant in Belgian and Dutch politics. Based on the PARTIREP MP Survey it more precisely studies the extent to which Belgian and Dutch parliamentarians in comparison to other European countries attach importance to the representation of ‘old’ cleavage groups (class and religious groups) or new groups (age groups, women and ethnic minorities), and which strategies are considered most appropriate. Group representation of old and new groups is found to be of great importance in both countries. Class is not dead and age groups are also highly represented. In contrast, religious groups and ethnic minorities receive far less attention in the Low Countries. Notwithstanding these similarities, there is also cross-country variation regarding the level of importance (greater in the Netherlands), the represented groups and the strategies for representation.


Karen Celis
Karen Celis is als onderzoeksprofessor verbonden aan de Vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Zij verricht onderzoek naar de politieke representatie van groepen (vrouwen, etnische minderheden, LBGT, leeftijdsgroepen en sociale klassen).

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is docent aan de Faculteit Handelswetenschappen en Bestuurskunde van de Hogeschool Gent en gastdocent aan de Faculteit Politieke en Sociale Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Zijn onderzoek gaat over politieke vertegenwoordiging, electorale systemen en politieke partijen.
Artikel

De diplomademocratie

Over de spanning tussen meritocratie en democratie

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2006
Auteurs Mark Bovens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Contemporary western democracies, such the United States, Great Britain, and The Netherlands have become diploma democracies. They are ruled by the well educated, whereas the least educated, even though they still comprise about half of the population, have virtually vanished from most political arenas. Of course, the well educated have always been more politically active than the less educated, but in the past decades this gap has widened substantially. Well-educated citizens are more inclined to vote, to write letters to the editor, or to visit consultative or deliberative meetings than citizens with a low level of education; and most, if not all, members of parliament, all the political officials, and almost all of the political advocates and lobbyists, have college or graduate degrees. The paper substantiates the rise of diploma democracy in The Netherlands, discusses what is problematic about such an educational meritocracy in the context of democracy, and looks at what could be done to mitigate or remedy some of its negative effects.


Mark Bovens
Prof. dr. Mark Bovens is als hoogleraar Bestuurskunde verbonden aan de Utrechtse School voor Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap van de Universiteit Utrecht, Bijlhouwerstraat 6, 3511 ZC Utrecht. Zijn meest recente boek is De digitale republiek: Democratie en rechtsstaat in de informatiemaatschappij (AUP 2003). Correspondentiegegevens: m.a.p.bovens@uu.nl www.usg.uu.nl/research/m.bovens

    This article identifies institutions and arrangements concerning the reconciliation of working life and family life for various European countries. These institutions and arrangements concern time (flexible working hours and leave arrangements), money (tax systems) and facilities (childcare facilities). A fairer distribution of all work and care tasks requires proper facilities at national level in respect of childcare, parental leave, so-called leave savings schemes, the right to work part-time, etc. Such facilities are of particular importance while taking the first steps towards a fairer distribution: they will enable men to take on more tasks at home, while making it easier for women to work outside the home. The article concludes that with regard to reconciliation facilities, the differences between the several welfare states within the European Union are fading away. This is interesting, because as a result the EU countries are increasingly finding common ground in terms of solutions for reconciliation and more specifically the role of men.


Ivy Koopmans
Ivy Koopmans is als onderzoeker verbonden aan de Utrecht School of Economics van de Universiteit Utrecht. Adres: Utrecht School of Economics, Vredenburg 138, 3511 BG Utrecht, I.Koopmans@econ.uu.nl

Joop Schippers
Joop Schippers is hoogleraar Arbeids- en Emancipatie-economie aan de Universiteit Utrecht en tevens is hij als programmahoogleraar verbonden aan de Organisatie voor Strategisch Arbeidsmarktonderzoek (OSA). Adres: Utrecht School of Economics, Vredenburg 138, 3511 BG Utrecht
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