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Thema-artikel

Strategische planning en fusies in Vlaamse gemeenten

Een essay over Vlaamse ervaringen met New Public Management-hervormingen

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden new public management, local government, strategic planning, municipal mergers, Flemish municipalities
Auteurs Bert George PhD
Samenvatting

    In the past years, Flemish municipalities have been confronted with a plethora of new public management reforms. The two probably most salient reforms include the introduction of a strategic planning system entitled the policy and management cycle (PMC) as well as the provision of financial incentives for municipalities that undertake a merger. These reforms are not unique to the Flemish context. Indeed, similar reforms took place in the Netherlands, where policy and management instruments (PMI) – a strategic planning system – were introduced in the eighties and municipal mergers have been part of the political agenda for several decades. But similar reforms also took place in, for instance, the United Kingdom (i.e. the best value regime in 1999) as well as Denmark (i.e. the municipal mergers in 2007). In this essay, these Flemish reforms are critically evaluated, taking into account following question: which public values are triggered through these reforms, and what might this imply for the Flemish and Dutch local public sector? This essay uses new public governance principles such as strategic thinking and the learning organisation to answer this question.


Bert George PhD
Artikel

Belofte maakt schuld

Medialogica in berichtgeving over verkiezingsbeloften in Nederland en de Verenigde Staten

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2017
Trefwoorden Media logic, Election promises, Pledge fulfilment, Personalisation, Negativity
Auteurs Erkan Ergün MSc, LLM en Dr. Niels Karsten
Samenvatting

    While existing research shows that politicians fulfil many of their election promises, voters remain very sceptical about pledge fulfilment. A possible explanation is that the media report critical about election pledges. That is why, in this article, the occurrence of media logic is analysed in the coverage of election promise fulfilment in two countries: the Netherlands and the United States. The results indicate that media logic is indeed ubiquitous in the coverage of election promises, but also that there is a difference in media coverage during governing periods and campaign periods. In addition, the results show that, in contrast to what the existing literature suggests, coverage on election promises is more negative in the Netherlands than in the United States. The media evaluate Dutch politicians’ pledge fulfilment more critically. This result offers the valuable insight that citizens and the media may take a negative view of the traditional way of making policies through compromise in consensus democracies because it forces politicians and governments to break their election promises. This, in turn, can fuel political cynicism.


Erkan Ergün MSc, LLM

Dr. Niels Karsten

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


Prof. Dr. Rens Vliegenthart
Dhr. Rens Vliegenthart is hoogleraar Communicatiewetenschap aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.
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