Zoekresultaat: 139 artikelen

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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.

    Overweight children are less fit than their peers, are bullied more often and face physical problems. It is therefore important for municipal administrators to devise and implement strategies to tackle youth obesity. Increasingly, the importance of measures in the physical environment is emphasized. However, a healthy living environment does not arise automatically. It requires an integrated and interactive policy approach. Vague policy language, stubborn ideas between public and private and divisions between policy areas stand in the way of measures taken by municipalities to achieve a healthy living environment for young people. To give such a working method a chance of success: (a) more knowledge has to be gained and made accessible about health-promoting policies; (b) professionals from the social and spatial domain must be better attuned to each other; and (c) administrators must commit themselves to an institutional context in which they work integrally and interactively.


Dr. Maurits Sanders
Dr. M.P.T. Sanders is eigenaar van PPS Construct en kerndocent Publiek-Private Samenwerking bij Nyenrode Business Universiteit.
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.
Article

Populism as a Visual Communication Style

An Exploratory Study of Populist Image Usage of Flemish Block/Interest in Belgium (1991-2018)

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Populism, image use, visual style, campaign, posters, visual, Flanders, populist right, Belgium
Auteurs Kevin Straetemans
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article analyses the visual communication of the Flemish populist right-wing party Vlaams Blok/Vlaams Belang, and investigates whether or not the party uses a specific populist communication style in its campaign posters, whether or not its visual style evolves over time and how the party distinguishes itself from other (right-wing) parties in its use of images. To do this, the image use will be compared with the CVP/CD&V and the Volksunie/N-VA. This use of images will be investigated by analysing election posters from 1991 to 2018. The analysis shows that there is indeed a ‘populist visual style’. These items consist mainly of (negative) metaphors, false dilemmas, caricatures and the use of so-called ‘agonic’ visual techniques.


Kevin Straetemans
Kevin Straetemans attained a Master’s degree in Political Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in 2018. He is currently pursuing an Educational Master in Social Sciences at the same university. His research interests are political parties, elections, extremism, propaganda and political communication.

    Q-methodologie is een nog relatief onbekende onderzoeksmethode, met veel potentieel voor beleidsonderzoek en -analyse. De benaderingen, doelen en onderzoeksvragen in verschillende toepassingen lopen uiteen, maar vertonen ook duidelijke overeenkomsten. In dit artikel beschrijven we de belangrijkste theoretische en analytische bouwstenen van de methode, en een praktijkgericht 10-stappenplan waarmee men snel zelf aan de slag kan met Q-methodologie. Op basis van een aantal toepassingen van Q-methodologie in Nederland en Vlaanderen laat dit artikel op inzichtelijke wijze zien wat Q-methodologie toevoegt aan de toolbox van beleidsonderzoekers. Naast de theoretische achtergrond van de methode biedt deze bijdrage een praktisch stappenplan voor het gebruik van de methode in de praktijk.


Ellen Minkman
Ellen Minkman is werkzaam aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Astrid Molenveld
Astrid Molenveld is verbonden aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam en de Universiteit Antwerpen.
Thema

Access_open Principes voor goed lokaal bestuur in de digitale samenleving

Een aanzet tot een normatief kader

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 4 2019
Auteurs Prof. dr. Albert Meijer, Dr. Mirko Tobias Schäfer en Dr. Martiene Branderhorst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article presents a normative framework for good local governance in the digital society. We build on the five principles of Frank Hendriks (laid down in an article in Urban Affairs Review in 2014): participation, effectiveness, learning ability, procedural justice and accountability. An analysis of these five principles leads to the refinement of these principles for the digital society. The overarching points are that attention is needed for the possibility of human contact, that avoiding discrimination must be central, that higher demands are made with regard to speed of action, that the principles increasingly apply to networks of organizations, and that the principles increasingly apply to the design of systems. This overview thus provides concrete tools for organizations that want to reflect with citizens and stakeholders on the extent to which they are able to achieve good local governance in the digital society.


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

Dr. Mirko Tobias Schäfer
Dr. M.T. Schäfer is universitair hoofddocent aan de Universiteit Utrecht bij het departement Media- en Cultuurwetenschappen.

Dr. Martiene Branderhorst
Dr. E.M. Branderhorst is gemeentesecretaris en algemeen directeur in de gemeente Gouda en lid van de Raad voor het Openbaar Bestuur (ROB).
Kroniek

De stikstofcrisis: van falend overheidsbeleid naar een lonkend toekomstperspectief?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden agricultural policy, nitrogen crisis, Programma Aanpak Stikstof, Natura2000, circular agriculture
Auteurs Dr. Jeroen Candel MA
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    On 29 May, the highest court in the Netherlands, the Council of State, ruled that the government’s Nitrogen Emissions Program (PAS) did not comply with the European Habitats Directive. The PAS arranged permit applications for economic activities that caused extra nitrogen oxide emissions. According to the Council of State, the PAS proved to be insufficiently capable of protecting the ‘natural characteristics’ of Natura2000-protected areas against damage caused by nitrogen depositions. The ruling has led to a situation in which all pending license applications in construction and agriculture have been rejected or put on hold. This political ‘nitrogen crisis’ that resulted from this ruling has been characterized by major disagreements between the government coalition parties, large farmers’ protests, and a faltering coordination between the central government and provinces. This essay analyzes the root causes of the nitrogen crisis and presents some ideas about how to overcome the current deadlock. I argue that the PAS debacle symbolizes a failing, reactive agricultural and nature policy. More than ever, strong leadership and a clear future perspective for the Dutch food system are needed.


Dr. Jeroen Candel MA
Dr. J.J.L. Candel MA is universitair docent Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Wageningen.
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-artikel

Access_open Positieve bestuurskunde

Naar een robuust positief perspectief op de overheid

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Positive Public Administration, successful public governance, research agenda, societal relevance
Auteurs Scott Douglas DPhil, Prof. dr. Trui Steen en Prof. dr. Zeger van der Wal
Samenvatting

    Citizens and scholars excel in identifying and analysing government failure. It is important indeed to understand public sector, but while governments in the Low Countries are doing well on average and very well from an internationally perspective, most attention is focused on the errors and mishaps. This article argues for a robust positive perspective on the public sector as a complement to existing research. From a scientific perspective, public administration must set itself the ambition to connect and aggregate existing positive insights even better. From a social perspective, the discipline must prevent the gap from being filled by a wholesale rejection of democratic government or the use of unproven miracle cures. This article elaborates the starting points for Positive Public Administration, arguing that this perspective should be comprehensive, context related, inter-subjective, learning-oriented, and robustly scientific in nature. The article also introduces the other contributions in this special issue, which together give an initial interpretation of positive public administration.


Scott Douglas DPhil

Prof. dr. Trui Steen

Prof. dr. Zeger van der Wal
Thema-artikel

Catharsis: een vergeten functie van financiële verantwoording

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Catharsis, Accountability, Emotions, Debates, Positive Public Administration
Auteurs Dr. Sjoerd Keulen en Dr. Ronald Kroeze
Samenvatting

    Performance Budgeting has been introduced to gain greater managerial control over the outcomes and efficiency of policies and their budgets. Strikingly, a growing body of literature has explained that politicians hardly use performance information or only to emotionally judge government performance. We, however, propose understanding the emotional use of performance information as catharsis. Catharsis is the ritual of emotional and moral judging to understand and initiate improvement. Catharsis has been named as an important function of accountability, but has not been researched in the field of Public Administration. We discuss the concept of catharsis in relation to accountability and show that, by using evidence from its role in Dutch parliament, the use of ‘cathartic emotions’ are omnipresent in financial debates, especially when parliamentary enquiries and annual budgets are debated. Based on these findings catharsis should be understood as a much more serious function of accountability by both academics and public officials.


Dr. Sjoerd Keulen

Dr. Ronald Kroeze
Thema-artikel

Positieve beleidsevaluatie: hoe evaluatieonderzoek kan bijdragen aan beter beleid

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden positive public administration, positive evaluation, positive psychology, success, policy oriented learning
Auteurs Dr. Peter van der Knaap en Dr. Rudi Turksema
Samenvatting

    New insights from the field of positive psychology led to the insight that people learn more effectively from positive feedback. Policy evaluation aims to improve public policy programmes through contributing to both accountability and learning. This ambiguous ambition has contributed to a considerable body of research into the impact of policy evaluation. Too often the conclusion is that the outcomes of policy evaluations – which are often negative by nature – are sparsely used by policy makers. This has led to series of improvements in the way we carry out evaluations. First through technical improvements and then by more responsive approaches. Both have not led to the desired breakthrough. Building on a number of positive evaluation studies, we advance a more positive approach in policy evaluation. Focussing on the successes in policy programmes rather than on its failures may contribute to evaluation impact. Consequently, we think a more positive, appreciative approach and using data to find success in policy making is necessary for policy evaluators to be more effective. This article presents practical examples of positive policy evaluations and successful use of data in the domain of policy evaluation.


Dr. Peter van der Knaap

Dr. Rudi Turksema
Thema-artikel

Wanneer worden gemeenten gezien als waardevol?

Lokale publieke waardecreatie door de ogen van lokale actoren

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden public value management, Positive Public Administration, local government, performance assessment
Auteurs Scott Douglas DPhil en Prof. dr. Paul ’t Hart
Samenvatting

    This article explores how we can gain insight into the quality of local government with the help of the public value perspective. The public value perspective does not evaluate government through generalised standards or benchmarks, but through the judgments of the actors involved in the policy. This approach could do better justice to the unique context of different governments, such as different local governments. The public value perspective, however, is hampered by the competing expectations that actors have of public policy and their generally negative bias towards the government. Based on 71 interviews with local actors in six municipalities, we show how the public value approach does indeed yields many different and critical perspectives, even within municipalities that are considered successful by national experts. However, we also show which connections exist between these seemingly competing perspectives and how sombre judgments about past governance are actually influenced by optimistic ambitions for the future.


Scott Douglas DPhil

Prof. dr. Paul ’t Hart

    Overheidsbeleid heeft steeds meer te maken met digitalisering en data-ificering van de samenleving en het menselijk gedrag. Dat betekent uitdagingen voor beleidsevaluatoren. In dit artikel gaat het om éen van de daarmee gepaard gaande verschijnselen: Big Data en Artificiële Intelligentie (BD/AI). Het artikel stelt, na erop gewezen te hebben dat de evaluatieprofessie langere tijd niet erg actief op digitaal gebied is geweest, ten eerste de vraag wat BD/AI te bieden hebben aan evaluatieonderzoek van (digitaal) beleid. Vijf toepassingsmogelijkheden worden besproken die de kwaliteit, bruikbaarheid en relevantie van evaluatieonderzoek kunnen bevorderen. De tweede vraag is wat evaluatieonderzoek te bieden heeft, als het gaat om het analyseren/onderzoeken van de betrouwbaarheid, validiteit en enkele andere aspecten van Big Data en AI. Ook daar worden verschillende mogelijkheden (en moeilijkheden) geschetst. Naar het oordeel van de schrijver is het enerzijds dienstig (meer) gebruik te maken van BD/AI in evaluatieonderzoek, maar doen onderzoekers er ook goed aan (meer) aandacht uit te laten gaan naar: de assumpties die aan BD/AI ten grondslag liggen (inclusief het ‘black box’-probleem); de validiteit, veiligheid en geloofwaardigheid van algoritmes; de bedoelde en onbedoelde consequenties van het gebruik ervan; én de vraag of de claims dat digitale interventies die mede gebaseerd zijn op BD/AI effectief (of effectiever zijn dan andere), onderbouwd en valide zijn.


Frans L. Leeuw
Frans L. Leeuw (socioloog) is hoogleraar Recht, Openbaar Bestuur en Sociaalwetenschappelijk onderzoek aan Maastricht University. Eerder was hij o.a. directeur WODC, Hoofdinspecteur Hoger Onderwijs Onderwijsinspectie, hoogleraar evaluatieonderzoek Universiteit Utrecht, directeur doelmatigheidsonderzoek Algemene Rekenkamer en decaan Humanities Open Universiteit. Hij bereidt een boekje voor over 125 jaar empirisch-juridisch onderzoek, inclusief de nieuwste loot: digitaal empirisch-juridisch onderzoek. Eerdere publicaties handelden over diverse onderwerpen met als rode draden evaluatieonderzoek, theorieën, gedragsmechanismen, benutting van onderzoek en juridische thema’s.
Artikel

Access_open Sociale cohesie in gentrificerende arbeiderswijken van Amsterdam-Noord

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Gentrification, Bridging capital, Bonding capital, Amsterdam North, Public familiarity
Auteurs Dr. Linda van de Kamp en Dr. Saskia Welschen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    We analyze how ‘original’ residents in different gentrifying working class areas in Amsterdam North experience and evaluate the changes in their neighborhood in terms of social cohesion – in other words, whether they feel at home in their changing neighborhood and whether they feel connected to other residents. Policy interventions often focus on establishing connections between residents with different socioeconomic or cultural backgrounds, in order to stimulate mutual understanding. An underlying policy aim is to uplift vulnerable original residents through contact with higher income groups. Based on our empirical data, we critically assess the concept of ‘bridging capital’ (Putnam, 2000) that underpins several of the social activities that are organized in areas such as the ones in our study. Subsequently, we discuss the importance of ‘bonding capital’ or the sense of interconnectedness and strong ties amongst original residents. Our empirical data – based on both interviews and participatory observation – suggest that activities within the ‘own’ community contribute importantly to feelings of belonging in the neighborhood. In the final section of the article, we discuss how different types of local meeting places offer opportunities for ‘lighter’ forms of interactions without aiming directly at strong connections between differently positioned neighborhood residents.


Dr. Linda van de Kamp
Dr. Linda van de Kamp is werkzaam aan de afdeling Sociologie van de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Dr. Saskia Welschen
Dr. Saskia Welschen is senior onderzoeker aan de Hogeschool van Amsterdam en zelfstandig onderzoeker.
Artikel

Access_open Sociaal werk in stadswijken waar problemen zich opstapelen

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Residualisering, Stedelijk sociaal werk, Concentratie van sociale problematiek, Link work, Geuzenveld
Auteurs Dr. Saskia Welschen en Dr. Lex Veldboer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The impact of residualisation on social work has so far hardly been explored. Based on existing literature and recently started empirical research in Amsterdam we analyze several consequences. Residualisation refers to the process whereby urban social housing is strictly allocated to the lowest income groups. What does this concentration of disadvantaged households mean for the role of social workers? Firstly, for community workers residualisation mostly implies a renewed role as instigators of residents’ participation in urban renewal trajectories for social mix. Furthermore community activities are increasingly used to offer safe havens for new and old groups of residents and also to prevent expensive treatments for several residential groups. For social workers focusing on individual support or casework residualisation results in an increasingly complex caseload. Residualisation does not imply extra formation for social work, but rather extra attention for the effortful coproduction of welfare between formal and informal actors. Within this playing field, we distinguish link work as vital for both formal and informal social work. Link work is about establishing vertical and horizontal connections between different worlds, across sectoral, professional or trust gaps. We expect that in areas of residualisation successful urban social work is dependent on strong linking skills.


Dr. Saskia Welschen
Dr. Saskia Welschen is senior onderzoeker aan de Hogeschool van Amsterdam en zelfstandig onderzoeker.

Dr. Lex Veldboer
Dr. Lex Veldboer is lector aan de Hogeschool van Amsterdam.
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.
Thema-artikel ‘Uitgesproken Bestuurskunde’

Gedragen gedragsverandering

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden public administration, public management, psychology, behavioral public administration, behavior change, design science
Auteurs Prof. dr. Lars Tummers
Samenvatting

    Changing behavior is often necessary to tackle societal problems. Governments can change behavior via economic incentives (such as subsidies for electric cars), bans/mandates (such as prison sentences for drug smuggling), communication (for example information campaigns) and nudges (for example, being a donor by default). However, the government should not be a manipulator that applies the latest behavioral tricks without societal support. Public administration research shows that support cannot be taken for granted. If there is no support for behavioral change, well-intended interventions can even be counterproductive. I therefore develop a model for supported behavioral change. I provide five criteria that indicate when there is supported behavioral change: if the behavioral change is both effective (1) and efficient (2), and when there is support for behavioral change among politicians (3), among implementing organizations (4), and among citizens (5).


Prof. dr. Lars Tummers
Reflectie & debat

Access_open Seniors, vermijd wreed optimisme en gebruik je positie

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Publish or perish, Cruel optimism, Discourse analysis, Academic hierarchy, Junior scholars
Auteurs Yvonne La Grouw PhD
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

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


Yvonne La Grouw PhD
Yvonne La Grouw is PhD-student sociologie aan de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
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.
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