Zoekresultaat: 33 artikelen

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Article

Interest Representation in Belgium

Mapping the Size and Diversity of an Interest Group Population in a Multi-layered Neo-corporatist Polity

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering Online First 2020
Trefwoorden interest groups, advocacy, access, advisory councils, media attention
Auteurs Evelien Willems, Jan Beyers en Frederik Heylen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article assesses the size and diversity of Belgium’s interest group population by triangulating four data sources. Combining various sources allows us to describe which societal interests get mobilised, which interest organisations become politically active and who gains access to the policy process and obtains news media attention. Unique about the project is the systematic data collection, enabling us to compare interest representation at the national, Flemish and Francophone-Walloon government levels. We find that: (1) the national government level remains an important venue for interest groups, despite the continuous transfer of competences to the subnational and European levels, (2) neo-corporatist mobilisation patterns are a persistent feature of interest representation, despite substantial interest group diversity and (3) interest mobilisation substantially varies across government levels and political-administrative arenas.


Evelien Willems
Evelien Willems, Departement Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Jan Beyers
Jan Beyers, Departement Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Frederik Heylen
Frederik Heylen, Departement Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium.
Thema-artikel

Tegendraads betrokken

De bijdrage van de complexiteitstheorie aan bestuur en bestuurskunde

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden complexity theory, machine, simplification, complex systems, critical public administration
Auteurs Hans Joosse MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Complexity theory dares to adopt a critical-constructive attitude to the practice and science of public administration. From the worldview of complex systems, it raises questions about the machine thinking that has influenced public administration strongly and persistently. Many contemporary attempts by governments to simplify societal issues to knowable, solvable and controllable problems – for example the approach to transforming Utrecht Central Station and dealing with multi-dimensional problems in families – can be traced back to machine thinking. Complexity theory points to the ineffectiveness and undesirability of simplifications and considers the complexity of government and society a quality that should be increased rather than reduced. Complexity theory not only keeps the administrative mind sharp on simplification reflexes, but also offers the option to make policy by increasing, rather than reducing complexity.


Hans Joosse MSc
J.A. Joosse, MSc is promovendus aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam, Department of Public Administration and Sociology.
Thema-artikel

Access_open Onafhankelijk onderzoek in positie, oordeelsvorming en beeldvorming

Institutionele en professionele dimensies van ‘speaking truth to power’

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden Independent Research, Policy Evaluation, Organisational Culture, Public Policy, Quality Management
Auteurs Dr. Peter van der Knaap, Dr. Meike Bokhorst en Dr. Yvonne Kleistra
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Regularly, doubts about the independence of research leads to heated discussion. This is especially true if things have gone wrong. This issue explores the question how research organizations and researchers can defend themselves against improper influence: the conscious and active pursuit of too positive research results by commissioners or government officials. This article outlines a number of dimensions of how establishing good, independent research can be structured in a systematic and sensible manner. Independent inquiry manifests itself in position, judgment, and appearance or image. Institutional safeguards form the basis for professional roles and responsibilities that can fulfill the requirements of independent research in the political arena.


Dr. Peter van der Knaap
Dr. P. van der Knaap is directeur-bestuurder van SWOV, voorzitter van Vide en redactielid van Bestuurskunde.

Dr. Meike Bokhorst
Dr. A.M. Bokhorst is onderzoeker bij de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid en bij de Universiteit Utrecht.

Dr. Yvonne Kleistra
Dr. Y. Kleistra is universitair docent aan de Universiteit Leiden en redactielid van Bestuurskunde.
Article

Access_open Opening the Opaque Blank Box

An Exploration into Blank and Null Votes in the 2018 Walloon Local Elections

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden voting, elections, blank vote, invalid vote, abstention
Auteurs Jean-Benoit Pilet, Maria Jimena Sanhuza, David Talukder e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article, we propose an in-depth exploration of blank and null ballots in the recent 2018 local elections in Wallonia (Belgium). In the official results, both blank and null ballots are merged together and are classified as invalid votes. After obtaining the authorization to access genuine electoral ballots, we study the votes which were not considered for the composition of local councils in detail. The dataset is a representative sample of 13,243 invalidated ballots from 49 Walloon municipalities. We first describe how many of these invalidated ballots are blank and how many are null votes, as well as the nature of the nulled votes (unintended errors or intentionally spoiled ballots). Second, we dig deeper into the differences between ballots that have been intentionally invalidated by voters (blank votes and intentional null votes) and ballots non-intentionally invalidated. Our results show that most of the ballots (two-thirds) are null ballots and that among them, half are unintentional null ballots. Finally, we show that contextual (socio-demographic and political) factors explain the variations in intentional and unintentional null votes across municipalities.


Jean-Benoit Pilet
Jean-Benoit Pilet is professor of political science at Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB). He works on elections, political parties, and democratic reforms. He has recently co-authored Faces on the Ballot. The Personalization of Electoral Systems in Europe (OUP, 2016, with Alan Renwick) and The Politics of Party Leadership (OUP, 2016, with William Cross).

Maria Jimena Sanhuza
Maria Jimena Sanhueza is PhD Researcher in Political Science at Universite Libre de Bruxelles where she is associated to three projects studying Belgian politics. Her research focuses on citizenship, representation and democracy. Before starting her PhD, Maria Jimena worked as assistant researcher for EU HORIZON 2020 projects Pathways to Power and Solidarity in Times on Crisis, and co-authored a few publications on European democracies and representation.

David Talukder
David Talukder is PhD candidate at the Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB). He is conducting a thesis on the reform of representative democracy, looking at disadvantaged groups’ evaluation of representative democracy and demands for procedural democratic reforms. His main research interests are related to procedural democratic reforms, participatory democracy and democratic innovations.

Jérémy Dodeigne
Jérémy Dodeigne is associate professor in political science at the Université de Namur. His research areas cover the study of political representation in multilevel systems, local politics, comparative politics and mixed methods research designs. His work appears in journals such as Party Politics, American Behavioral Scientist, Local Government Studies, Regional & Federal Studies, Government & Opposition, and Representation.

Audrey E. Brennan
Audrey E. Brennan is completing a joint doctorate in political science at Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and Université Laval. Her research interests are political parties, elections, and political participation. Her dissertation studies the effect of leadership change mechanisms on the long-term behaviour of political party members.
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
Dossier

Access_open Uitdijende financiële macht: de monetaire orde van de ECB

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

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

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

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

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.

Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Artikel

Greep op het ongrijpbare?

Een onderzoek naar nieuwe vormen van controle en verantwoording in een samenwerkend lokaal bestuur

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 4 2017
Auteurs Prof. dr. Bas Denters, Dr. Pieter-Jan Klok en Anieke Kranenburg BSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In recent years in the Netherlands, a lot of attention has been paid to the question of how municipal councils maintain inter-municipal cooperation, which has also become increasingly important because of decentralizations in the social domain. Other forms of collaborating governance have received much less attention. This article focuses primarily on these, until now, largely underexposed forms of collaborative governance because, apart from inter-municipal cooperation and participation of Dutch municipalities in different organizations based on private law, modern municipalities maintain a variety of cooperative relations with organizations in local society. The municipal board and the mayor often play a key role in the web of these cooperative relations, but what is the role of the municipal council? In what way do municipal councils in the Netherlands institutionally shape control and accountability in (intra-municipal) collaborative governance? The article gives an overview of the rules of the game that are currently being used in Dutch municipalities for the control and accountability of intra-municipal collaborative governance. This inventory may be a point of reference for municipal councils, individual councilors and registrars of the council in their search for new rules of the game for control and accountability for different forms of ‘displaced’ local governance. The aim of this broad inventory is to outline possible interesting and innovative forms of control and accountability; it is not about proven ‘best practices’.


Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB) en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Pieter-Jan Klok
Dr. P.J. Klok is universitair docent Beleidsprocessen bij de vakgroep Public Administration van de Universiteit Twente (Faculteit Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences).

Anieke Kranenburg BSc
A. Kranenburg BSc doet de master European Studies (double degree met de Universiteit Münster) en de master Public Administration aan de Universiteit Twente.

    The increased complexity of multilevel democracies makes the evaluation of the performances of the government an increasingly difficult task for citizens. Multilevel governance involves information costs, which makes it more difficult for citizens to give clear responsibility for government tasks to the correct level of government. This article contains the first study that is focussing on the responsibility perceptions in the Netherlands. The authors do not just look at who citizens hold responsible for certain government tasks, but they also look at the consequences of these perceptions for the mechanism of accountability. The satisfaction of citizens are with the policy in a particular area should only influence the political support for the level of government they hold responsible. Results of the research are that in line with this perspective a strong correlation exists between satisfaction with the pursued policy and trust of the citizens in this government, in proportion as they hold a level of government more responsible. On the other hand there are large differences between citizens, that correlate with their level of education. So there are also large groups of citizens for whom it is not possible to keep governments responsible for the policy pursued, because they simply do not know which government is responsible.


Lisanne de Blok MSc
E.A. de Blok MSc is promovendus aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam. Hiervoor deed ze een research master sociale wetenschappen aan dezelfde universiteit en liep ze stage bij de Raad voor het openbaar bestuur (Rob).

Prof. dr. Wouter van der Brug
Prof. dr. W. van der Brug is hoogleraar Politicologie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.
Article

Democratische politiek: ‘minder, minder, minder’ of anders?

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 1 2017
Auteurs Frank Hendriks, Koen van der Krieken en Sabine van Zuydam
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article looks at indications and counterindications in Dutch democracy for the popular claim that citizens, while still valuing representative democracy, are fed up with representative politics. Using available large-scale surveys, citizen attitudes are analysed at the levels of specific political actors (politicians, officials), central political institutions (political parties, parliament, government) and the general system of representative democratic politics (the way it works in the Netherlands, with multiparty coalitions, etc). While specific legitimacy problems exist, the evidence for a general legitimacy crisis in Dutch democracy is comparatively weak and highly mixed. More specifically, the evidence suggests that Dutch citizens do not so much want less representative politics, but rather representative politics of a somewhat different kind: less exclusively organized via party-political channels; more geared at recognizable and accountable political authority. Dutch citizens want to seriously influence but not supplant selectionistic representative politics, the evidence suggests.


Frank Hendriks
Frank Hendriks is als hoogleraar comparative governance verbonden aan Tilburg University. Hij is gespecialiseerd in de vergelijkende analyse van democratische modellen en hervormingen. Hierover publiceerde hij onder meer Vital Democracy (Oxford University Press, 2010) en, meer toegespitst op Nederland, Democratie onder druk (Van Gennep, 2012).

Koen van der Krieken
Koen van der Krieken is als promovendus en onderzoeker verbonden aan Tilburg School of Governance (TSG). Hij werkt aan een dissertatie over het lokale referendum in Nederland. In 2015 schreef hij, in opdracht van het Ministerie van BZK, een rapport over heden, verleden en toekomst van de lokale referendumpraktijk in Nederland.

Sabine van Zuydam
Sabine van Zuydam is onderzoeker bij Tilburg School of Governance (TSG). In haar proefschrift onderzoekt zij wat lijsttrekkers in verkiezingen, ministers en fractieleiders geloofwaardig maakt in de ogen van burgers. Ze deed mede-onderzoek naar het Nederlandse burgemeestersambt, de vermaatschappelijking van overheidstaken en de rol van de raad bij controversiële besluitvorming.

    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

Aan de knoppen maar uit de pas?

Euroscepsis en euro-enthousiasme onder Nederlandse ambtenaren

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 4 2016
Trefwoorden Euroscepticism, representative bureaucracy, civil service, public opinion, the Netherlands, public administration
Auteurs Caspar van den Berg, Sebastiaan Princen en Ellen Mastenbroek
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    National officials play an important role in all phases of the EU policy process and are often assumed to be more euro-enthusiastic than other citizens. Yet, thus far systematic knowledge on their views on EU integration is lacking. This study fills this gap through recently collected survey data among Dutch officials (N = 3509). We find first that at least for officials, hard and soft euroscepticism are no gradations on the same scale, but separate dimensions. Second, both sociological and rational choice institutionalism help explain bureaucratic euroscepticism, where the latter seems to have a somewhat stronger explanatory power. Third, officials are on average indeed more euro-enthusiastic than other citizens. However, (a) relatively fewer officials are strongly euro-enthusiastic compared to the general population; (b) the total share of eurosceptics among officials is practically the same as the general population, and (c) significantly more officials report to be ‘strongly eurosceptic’ than among the wider population.


Caspar van den Berg
Caspar van den Berg is universitair hoofddocent aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde van de Universiteit Leiden.

Sebastiaan Princen
Sebastiaan Princen is hoogleraar bestuur en beleid in de Europese Unie aan het Departement Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap van de Universiteit Utrecht.

Ellen Mastenbroek
Ellen Mastenbroek is hoogleraar European Public Policy aan de Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen van de Radboud Universiteit.
Artikel

Systematisch leren van evalueren

Waarden, effectiviteit, onafhankelijkheid en kwaliteit als pijlers voor de brug tussen wetenschap en politiek

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2016
Trefwoorden Policy, Evaluation, Accountability, Learning, Values
Auteurs Prof. Dr. André Knottnerus, Dr. Peter de Goede en Dr. Peter van der Knaap
Samenvatting

    Policy evaluation has two main functions: it should lead to policy oriented learning and facilitate accountability. Rendering account is considered an important democratic duty but is not very popular with politicians and, hence, public officials. Learning is popular, but in practice it is often difficult to organize or, indeed, witness.
    This contribution addresses the question how, in both functions, policy evaluation could be better utilized. As a starting point we the tension between scientific and political rationality and the barriers associated with these different worlds to the development of knowledge.
    As indispensable for sound and productive knowledge management in government the article outlines the importance of societal values, policy effectiveness as a research angle, and the independence of researchers at major evaluations. In addition, relevant research questions, high methodological quality, responsiveness, good timing, and clear and accessible reporting are indispensable. It is argued that these are by no means abstract notions but can be brought into real day-to-day practice.
    The conclusion is that a knowledge agenda for policy evaluation that is based on the search for effective policy interventions and societal values can help to bridge politics and science.


Prof. Dr. André Knottnerus

Dr. Peter de Goede

Dr. Peter van der Knaap

    This contribution describes civil service professionalism from a functionalist perspective: the most important function of civil service professionalism is creating, developing and maintaining the authority of governments. Contrary to common opinion, moral authority in our day appears to be of prime importance. Citizens appreciate moral authority, but this important source of authority is often underused by political-administrative officials (especially by them). By making better use of moral authority, civil servants – policy officials and executive officials – could play a much bigger role. In order to achieve this, their professionalism must be improved by creating a broad civil service charter from which (to a certain extent) they can derive a right for civil service professionalism. In the context of the present political debate in the Netherlands on the normalization of the legal status of civil servants, there is an opportunity now to make real progress in this matter. It would be a good thing if civil servants would make themselves heard in this debate. Looking after the moral dimension of the work of civil servants and the accountability in this respect is not only a matter for the Dutch cabinet and those preparing the civil service charter, but also for the civil servants in different parts of the Dutch civil service themselves.


Prof. dr. Gabriël van den Brink
Prof. dr. G.J.M. van den Brink is emeritus hoogleraar Maatschappelijke bestuurskunde aan de Tilburg University (Universiteit van Tilburg). Op 27 november 2015 hield hij zijn afscheidsrede.

Drs. Thijs Jansen
Drs. M. Jansen is universitair docent en senior onderzoeker aan de Tilburg University (Universiteit van Tilburg) bij de School voor Politiek en Bestuur.

    Een lerende overheid heeft behoefte aan beleidsevaluaties die niet alleen van betekenis zijn voor het onderwerp waarop deze primair gericht zijn, maar ook bijdragen aan bredere, systematische opbouw van kennis en ervaring. Het interdepartementaal verbinden van expertise verruimt daarbij het zicht op factoren die het leren bevorderen of belemmeren.
    Een centrale vraag is of de door het beleid beoogde publieke belangen inderdaad bevorderd worden. Beleidsevaluatie moet dan niet alleen gericht zijn op effectiviteit en doelmatigheid ten aanzien van relatief gemakkelijk meetbare indicatoren, maar ook op lastig te kwantificeren essentiële waarden zoals subjectief welzijn, rechtvaardigheid en maatschappelijke aanvaardbaarheid. Het verdient aanbeveling kostbare evaluatie-energie te concentreren op belangrijke kwesties waarover vooraf discussie of onzekerheid bestaat.
    Uit een oogpunt van doelmatige beleidsvoorbereiding, en omdat de uitwerking van wetgeving en beleid ex post niet altijd eenvoudig is vast te stellen, is veel aandacht nodig voor ex ante evaluatie. Van onderzoek naar werkingsmechanismen van beleidsmaatregelen wordt in dit verband terecht veel verwacht.
    Er is sprake van een paradoxaal spanningsveld tussen verwetenschappelijking en politisering van beleid. Daarom is stevig verankerde, onafhankelijke en onpartijdige beleidsevaluatie onmisbaar. Hoge methodologische kwaliteit biedt extra houvast om deze functie geloofwaardig te kunnen vervullen.
    In het streven naar systematische opbouw van kennis en ervaring naast dossier-specifieke doelbereiking kan het helpen als evaluaties zowel een specifiek als een breder geldend algemeen deel bevatten. Belangrijk is ook te sturen op een evenwichtige evaluatieportfolio per beleidsterrein, met aandacht voor ex ante en ex post methoden, uiteenlopende waarden, en verschillende informatiebronnen. Naast best practices moet daarbij ook minder geslaagd beleid in beeld worden gebracht. Voor de bruikbaarheid van evaluaties voor de praktijk is goede vertegenwoordiging van het bottom-up perspectief noodzakelijk.
    Evaluatie van beleid vereist gedegen inbedding binnen de nationale kennisinfrastructuur, effectieve samenwerking met kennisinstellingen en het up-to-date houden van het evalueren zelf. Dat is cruciaal voor het evaluatievermogen van de lerende overheid.


André Knottnerus
André Knottnerus is voorzitter van de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid en hoogleraar Huisartsgeneeskunde aan de Universiteit Maastricht.

    For the Dutch Association of Municipal Councillors (Raadslid.Nu) Bas Denters, professor of Public Administration at the University of Twente, wrote an essay on control and accountability in local government and the role of the municipality in this process. At close examination the relations in this area are less clear than they look on paper. The reason is what Mark Bovens and others have called the ‘displacement of politics’ in all its appearances: regionalization, privatization and socialization (i.e. tasks carried out by the society instead of the government). That process requires reflection on the question how democratic control and accountability at the local level can be reshaped. It is important to experiment with new ways in which municipal councils redefine the local processes of control and accountability. One can think of: (a) broadening the scope of the section in Dutch Municipal Law on affiliated parties (‘Verbonden Partijen’); (b) formulating Governance Charters and process framework notes; and (c) organizing the ‘democratic encirclement’ of the local administration, e.g. by other parties. In various places interesting initiatives have already been taken and hopefully this essay and the attention from Raadslid.Nu will contribute to more municipalities daring to blaze new paths.


Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB), wetenschappelijk adviseur van KISS en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

    This article is about one of the experiments in local democratic renewal: MyBorne2030 (in Dutch ‘MijnBorne2030’). The aim of the project was to develop a communal vision for Borne (a relatively small suburban municipality of 20.000 inhabitants in the East of the Netherlands) for the year 2030. A steering committee of 20 local organizations has worked out four scenarios on the basis of three building stones: an identity study, a research of societal trends and the formulation of ambitions. These four scenarios have been submitted to the citizens of Borne in a referendum. The scenario that has received the most votes (‘Dynamic villages’) is further elaborated in a new vison for the future called MyBorne2030. Institutionally the decision-making process in Borne can be described as a mixture of participative (deliberative), associative and direct (plebiscitary) democracy. The authors conclude that it was a successful experiment, that has produced broad support for the vision of Borne for the future and a solid basis for the implementation of this vision. Participants (as well as non-participants) think this approach can be repeated not only in Borne, but also in other municipalities. The authors add that this could also be the case for the level above of cooperating municipalities.


Prof. dr. Bas Denters
Prof. dr. S.A.H. Denters is hoogleraar Bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Twente, wetenschappelijk directeur van de Nederlandse Onderzoeksschool Bestuurskunde (NOB) en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Pieter-Jan Klok
Dr. P.J. Klok is universitair docent Beleidsprocessen bij de vakgroep Public Administration van de Universiteit Twente (Faculteit Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences).
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