Zoekresultaat: 70 artikelen

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Article

Is Euroscepticism Contagious?

How Mainstream Parties React to Eurosceptic Challengers in Belgian Parliaments

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering Online First 2021
Trefwoorden Euroscepticism, parliaments, party competition, Belgium, federalism
Auteurs Jordy Weyns en Peter Bursens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Euroscepticism has long been absent among Belgian political parties. However, since the start of the century, some Eurosceptic challengers have risen. This article examines the effect of Eurosceptic competition on the salience other parties give to the EU and on the positions these parties take in parliament. Using a sample of plenary debates in the federal and regional parliaments, we track each party’s evolution from 2000 until 2019. Our findings both contradict and qualify existing theories and findings on Eurosceptic competition. When facing Eurosceptic challengers, all parties raise salience fairly equally, but government and peripheral parties adopted (soft) Euroscepticism more often than other parties.


Jordy Weyns
Jordy Weyns is a recent graduate from Universiteit Antwerpen, and will soon start a PhD program at the European University Institute in Firenze.

Peter Bursens
Peter Bursens is professor of political science at Universiteit Antwerpen, at the research group Politics and Public Governance and the GOVTRUST Centre of Excellence.
Article

Access_open An Actor Approach to Mediatization

Linking Politicians’ Media Perceptions, Communication Behaviour and Appearances in the News

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2021
Trefwoorden mediatization, politicians, news media, media perceptions, news management
Auteurs Pauline Ketelaars en Peter Van Aelst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the light of the broader debate on the mediatization of politics, this study wants to better understand how the media perceptions and media behaviour of politicians are related to their appearances in the news. We opt for an innovative actor-centred approach to actually measure the views and actions of individual politicians. We combine surveys conducted with 142 Belgian representatives with data on politicians’ external communication behaviour and on their appearances in television news, newspapers and news websites. The results show that media behaviour is not so much related to beliefs of media importance. We do find a significant positive relationship between strategic media behaviour and media attention suggesting that politicians who put in more effort appear more often in various news media. However, this positive relationship depends on the specific form of strategic communication and the political position of the legislator. Our study adds to the mediatization literature by showing how and when politicians are successful in obtaining media attention.


Pauline Ketelaars
Pauline Ketelaars was a postdoctoral researcher of the Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (FWO). Her main research interests are political communication and social movements.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is a research professor at the department of political science at the University of Antwerp and a founding member of the research group ‘Media, Movements and Politics’ (M2P). His research focuses on political communication. Corresponding author: peter.vanaelst@uantwerpen.be.
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 1 2021
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 is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Political Science, University of Antwerp. Her research focuses on the interplay between interest groups, public opinion and public policy.

Jan Beyers
Jan Beyers is Full Professor of Political Science at the University of Antwerp. His current research projects focus on how interest groups represent citizens interests and to what extent the politicization of public opinion affects processes of organized interest representation in public policymaking.

Frederik Heylen
Frederik Heylen holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Antwerp. His doctoral dissertation addresses the organizational development of civil society organizations and its internal and external consequences for interest representation. He is co-founder and CEO of Datamarinier.
Research Note

Caretaker Cabinets in Belgium

A New Measurement and Typology

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2021
Trefwoorden caretaker government, Belgium, cabinets, political crisis
Auteurs Régis Dandoy en Lorenzo Terrière
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Belgium is probably the world’s best known case of where caretaker governments reside. Yet a clear scholarly definition and measurement of this concept is missing. Based on a detailed analysis of the Belgian federal cabinets, this research note explores the main characteristics and measures the length of the various caretaker periods. We find that Belgium was governed for no less than 1,485 days by a caretaker government between 2007 and 2020, which equals more than four full calendar years. This research note also presents a novel typology of caretaker periods based on the institutional and political practice within the Belgian legislative and executive branches. This typology can be used to assess caretaker periods at other levels of government as well as in other countries in order to improve our understanding of the many ‘faces’ that a caretaker government can take on.


Régis Dandoy
Régis Dandoy is professor in political science at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador and visiting research fellow and guest lecturer at the University of Brussels, Belgium. His main research interests include comparative politics, federalism, voting behaviour, election results, electronic and internet voting and election observation.

Lorenzo Terrière
Lorenzo Terrière is a PhD candidate and teaching assistant at Ghent University. His doctoral research is focused on how (regionalist) parties deal with the strategic issue of government participation.
Artikel

Access_open ‘We gaan het gewoon doen!’

Rebelse initiatieven in onderwijs en ouderenhuisvesting

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2021
Trefwoorden rebellion, housing for older people, education, rules and regulations, room to manoeuvre
Auteurs Marianne van Bochove, Katja Rusinovic, Suzanna Koops-Boelaars e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Both education and housing are highly regulated sectors in the Netherlands. According to various stakeholders, regulations and formal and informal rules hinder the development of new initiatives aimed at providing attention to personal needs and wishes of children (in education) and older people (in housing). This article focuses on founders of initiatives in both sectors that, despite institutional obstacles, dare to do things differently. We adopt a rebellion perspective, which focuses on how individual and collective actors aim to create favorable circumstances for providing better services, even if this means they have to disrupt existing institutions. In-depth interviews were conducted with 22 founders of rebellious initiatives in education and housing for older people. According to the founders, what makes them different from others is having a dream, learning by doing, and critically assessing rules and regulations. Founders in both sectors not only interpret rules differently, but also try to change them. In order to do so, they need supportive internal and external contexts, which they create through personal contacts and social media. Although rebellion in both sectors has many similarities, sector-specific institutional settings and past events do shape its appearance.


Marianne van Bochove
Dr. Marianne van Bochove is universitair docent, sectie Health Care Governance, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam en senior onderzoeker aan De Haagse Hogeschool.

Katja Rusinovic
Dr. Katja Rusinovic is lector grootstedelijke ontwikkeling, faculteit Bestuurskunde, Recht & Veiligheid aan De Haagse Hogeschool.

Suzanna Koops-Boelaars
Suzanna Koops-Boelaars, MSc, is promovendus, sectie Health Care Governance, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Joost van Hoof
Dr. ir. Joost van Hoof is lector urban ageing, faculteit Sociaal Werk & Educatie, aan De Haagse Hogeschool.

    From 1964 (until around 1990), political science became the dominant approach within (local) administrative sciences in the Netherlands. This position was taken over from the legal approach. In this period, the concepts of politics, policy and decision-making were central to research and theory. In the period up to 1990, we still see a predominantly administration-centric or government-centric perspective among these political scientists, although we already see incentives from different authors for a broader perspective (the politics, policy and decision-making concepts remain relevant however) that will continue in the period thereafter. This broader perspective (on institutions, management and governance) took shape in the period after 1990, in which Public Administration would increasingly profile itself as an independent (inter)discipline. This essay tells the story of the (local) administrative sciences in this period as envisaged by twelve high-profile professors. The story starts in 1990 in Leiden with the (gradual) transition from classical to institutional Public administration, as is revealed in the inaugural lecture by Theo Toonen. This is followed by eleven other administrative scientists, who are divided into four ‘generations’ of three professors for convenience. In conclusion, the author of this essay argues that there is mainly a need for what he calls a (self-)critical Public Administration.


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

Campaigning Online and Offline: Different Ballgames?

Presidentialization, Issue Attention and Negativity in Parties’ Facebook and Newspaper Ads in the 2019 Belgian General Elections

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2020
Trefwoorden political advertising, Belgium, social media, newspapers, campaign
Auteurs Jonas Lefevere, Peter Van Aelst en Jeroen Peeters
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This Research Note investigates party advertising in newspapers and on social media (Facebook) during the 2019 general elections in Flanders, the largest region of Belgium. The 2019 elections saw a marked increase in the use of social media advertising by parties, whereas newspaper advertising saw a decline. Prior research that compares multiple types of advertising, particularly advertising on social and legacy media remains limited. As such, based on a quantitative content analysis we investigate not just the prevalence of party advertising on both types of media, but also compare the level of negativity, presidentialisation, and issue emphasis. Our analysis reveals substantial differences: we find that not only the type of advertisements varies across the platforms, but also that social media ads tend to be more negative. Finally, parties’ issue emphasis varies substantially as well, with different issues being emphasized in newspaper and Facebook advertisements.


Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is research professor of political communication at the institute for European Studies (VUB) and assistant professor at Vesalius College, Brussels.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst is a research professor at the department of political science at the University of Antwerp.

Jeroen Peeters
Jeroen Peeters is a PhD student at the department of political science at the University of Antwerp.

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.
Article

Getting Party Activists on Local Lists

How Dutch Local Party Branches Perform Their Recruitment Function

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden municipal politics, political parties, candidate lists, local party branches, recruitment
Auteurs Simon Otjes, Marcel Boogers en Gerrit Voerman
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article examines what explains the performance of Dutch local party branches in the recruitment of candidates for municipal councils. Fielding a list of candidates is the most basic function of political parties. In the Netherlands, party branches are under pressure from the low number of party members. To analyse how branches fulfil their role in recruitment, we employ our own survey of the secretaries of party branches held in the run-up to the 2018 municipal election. We find that party membership drives the successful fulfilment of the recruitment function but that, more than the absolute number of members, the crucial factors are how these party members cooperate, the number of active members and the development of this number.


Simon Otjes
Simon Otjes is Assistant Professor of Dutch Politics at Leiden University and researcher at the Documentation Centre Dutch Political Parties of Groningen University. His research focuses on political parties, parliaments and public opinion. His articles have appeared in the American Journal of Political Science and in the European Journal of Political Research, among others.

Marcel Boogers
Marcel Boogers is Professor of Innovation and Regional governance at Twente University. His research focuses on the structure of and dynamics within networks of local and regional governments. Boogers combines his position at Twente University with a position as senior advisor at consultancy firm BMC.

Gerrit Voerman
Gerrit Voerman is Professor of the Development and Function of the Dutch and European Party System at Groningen University and Director of its Centre Dutch Political Parties. His research focuses on political parties, their history and their organisation. He is editor of a long-running series of books on Dutch political parties.
Article

Access_open The Feminisation of Belgian Local Party Politics

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden local politics, local party branches, local elections, gender quotas, Belgium
Auteurs Robin Devroe, Silvia Erzeel en Petra Meier
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article investigates the feminisation of local politics. Starting from the observation that the representation of women in local electoral politics lags behind the regional and federal level, and taking into account the relevance of local party branches in the recruitment and selection of candidates for elections, we examine the extent to which there is an ‘internal’ feminisation of local party branches and how this links to the ‘external’ feminisation of local electoral politics. Based on surveys among local party chairs, the article maps patterns of feminisation over time and across parties, investigates problems local branches encounter in the recruitment of candidates for local elections, and analyses the (attitudes towards the) measures taken to further the integration of women in local electoral politics. We conclude that internal and external feminisation do not always go hand in hand and that local politics continues to be a male-dominated political biotope.


Robin Devroe
Robin Devroe is a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Political Sciences of Ghent University and member of the research group GASPAR. Her main research interest is the study of the political representation of diverse social groups and voting behaviour, with a specific focus on the descriptive representation of women, and she has a fascination for experimental methods. Her doctoral work (2019, Ghent University) focused on the prevalence of political gender stereotypes among Flemish voters. In the past, Robin was a visiting scholar at Texas A&M University (2018, US). Since 2020, she has been co-convenor of the European Consortium for Political Research’s (ECPR’s) Group on Gender and Politics.

Silvia Erzeel
Silvia Erzeel is Assistant Professor at the Department of Political Science, Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Her research interests include party politics, political representation, gender and intersectionality, and comparative politics. Her current research focuses on three main areas: the integration of gender equality in political parties, intersectionality and political representation in Europe, and the consequences of economic and social inequality for representative democracy. Since 2018, she has been co-convenor of the European Consortium for Political Research’s (ECPR’s) Standing Group on Gender and Politics.

Petra Meier
Petra Meier is Professor of Politics at the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Antwerp. Her research focuses on the (re)presentation of gender+ in politics and policies. Late work focused on the conceptualisation of symbolic representation, how it operates and the issues at stake from an inclusive perspective. Recently, she turned to study democratic deficits in federal systems, especially Belgium, and processes of de-democratisation in general. She is particularly interested in understanding how such processes affect the demos, more particularly from a gender, an LGBTQI or an ethnic perspective, and what dynamics of marginalisation and exclusion they generate.
Article

Introduction: Parties at the Grassroots

Local Party Branches in the Low Countries

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2020
Auteurs Bram Wauters, Simon Otjes en Emilie van Haute
Auteursinformatie

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is Associate Professor in 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 specific attention for diversity. He has recently published on these topics in journals such as Party Politics, Political Studies, Politics & Gender and Political Research Quarterly. He is co-editor (with Knut Heidar) of ‘Do parties still represent?’ (Routledge, 2019).

Simon Otjes
Simon Otjes is Assistant Professor of Dutch Politics at Leiden University and researcher at the Documentation Centre Dutch Political Parties of Groningen University. His research focuses on political parties, parliaments and public opinion. His research has appeared in various journals, including American Journal of Political Science and European Journal of Political Research.

Emilie van Haute
Emilie van Haute is Chair of the Department of Political Science at the Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and researcher at the Centre d’étude de la vie politique (Cevipol). Her research interests focus on party membership, intra-party dynamics, elections and voting behaviour. Her research has appeared in West European Politics, Party Politics, Electoral Studies, Political Studies or European Political Science. She is co-editor of Acta Politica.

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.
Essay

Access_open In de ban van stadsgoeroes?

Herijking van inspiratiebronnen voor stadsbestuurders

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 2 2020
Auteurs Prof. dr. Nico Nelissen en Dr. Wouter Jan Verheul
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The urbanisation of society is a well-known fact. It is perhaps less well known that this process is accompanied by the emergence of ‘city gurus’. By this, the authors mean advisers, scientists and other authors who have an international influence on the thinking and actions of city administrators and other urban policymakers. City administrators nowadays often find their intellectual inspiration from ‘contemporary city gurus’. They are usually not public administration experts; instead they come from the fields of urban geography, urban economics, or urban sociology. Their ideas do however resonate in administrative practice. The questions that the popularity of contemporary city gurus raise are: is this a hype or is it really about thoughts that have a lasting impact on ‘urban development’ and city management? Which city gurus are we actually talking about? There are several of them, but in this essay the authors highlight a few that can be counted among the favourite speakers among the ‘science and advisor conference goers’ in recent years: Richard Florida, Bruce Katz, Richard Sennett, Benjamin Barber and Jeb Brugmann. The city gurus ask us to have an eye for the city. But the authors of this essay believe that that also means that we must be aware of differences, because every city and every city dweller is different, and that requires an interpretation of the ‘city of difference’. The popularity of the city leads to an increase in those differences and they present us with various considerations and management issues.


Prof. dr. Nico Nelissen
Prof. dr. N.J.M. Nelissen is emeritus hoogleraar aan de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, redactielid en oud-hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Dr. Wouter Jan Verheul
Dr. W.J. Verheul is onderzoeker, adviseur en universitair docent aan de Technische Universiteit Delft bij de faculteit Bouwkunde. Hij houdt zich bezig met urban governance & leadership, grote iconische stadsprojecten, stedelijke gebiedstransformaties, place branding en place making.
Dossier

Eis de regio op: regionale democratie in de energietransitie

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden regional democracy, Participation, energy transition
Auteurs Annajorien Prins MSc en Ruben van de Belt MSc MA
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The roadmap to the energy transition of the Netherlands in the next decade is formulated by and large at the regional level. 30 regions are currently developing a Regional Energy Strategy (RES), which lays out where renewable energy projects can be realized in the future. But how democratic are these regional energy strategies? In this article we share our observations and reflections, based on our professional experiences with the regional energy strategies.


Annajorien Prins MSc
Annajorien Prins MSc werkt als strategisch adviseur bij de provincie Overijssel en Studio Vers Bestuur.

Ruben van de Belt MSc MA
Ruben van de Belt LLM MSc MA is raadslid in Zwolle en voorzitter van de Regionale Werkgroep Raden, Staten en Algemeen Bestuur binnen de RES West-Overijssel. Daarnaast werkt hij als adviseur energietransitie in de jong-talentpool van Twynstra Gudde.
Thema-artikel

Een kritisch-pragmatische bestuurskunde

Oxymoron of gelukkig huwelijk?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden critical pragmatism, public administration, energy justice, governance arrangements, regional energy strategies
Auteurs Dr. Tamara Metze
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    A pragmatic criticaster or a critical pragmatist is considered a schizophrenic in daily life: it seems impossible to be solution oriented and critical at the same time. You are either an optimist or a pessimist. This schism also seems to run between public administration and political scientists. Public administration is focused on (positive) problem solving, whereas political scientists – especially in a tradition of critical theory – examine the exertion of power. This essay proposes a combination of the two extremes: a critical-pragmatist approach for public administration.
    In this approach, critical political theory goes hand in hand with pragmatist reconstruction and design. This design is impossible without normative and procedural principles, for example ideas about sustainability, justice and democracy. This is illustrated with an example for designing just governance arrangements in the Dutch regional energy strategies. The article shows that public administration that is relevant, reflective and democratic builds on a critical-pragmatist approach.


Dr. Tamara Metze
Dr. T. Metze is universitair hoofddocent Bestuur en beleid aan de universiteit van Wageningen.
Artikel

Verschillend organiseren, verschillend functioneren?

De invloed van de organisatie van Jeugd- (en Gezins)teams op het teamfunctioneren

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Youth Care, Youth Team, Team functioning, Self-management, Organization
Auteurs Laura Nooteboom MSc, Janna Eilander MSc, Dr. Joris van der Voet e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Objective: there are regional differences in the organization of local Youth Teams, that have been given a crucial role in delivering Youth Care since the transition of Youth Care in 2015. The aim of this article is to examine the influence of the organization of Youth Teams on several aspects of their functioning.
    Method: self-managing teams in Holland Rijnland and teams in The Hague that are led by a team manager are compared on several aspects of team functioning. This mixed-methods study is based on an online questionnaire among 237 professionals and interviews with 32 professionals. Quantitative data have been analyzed by conducting a t-test of group means, qualitative data by means of framework-analysis.
    Results: the organization of Youth Teams seems to influence certain aspects of the perceived team functioning. For example, professionals in the self-organizing teams Holland Rijnland experience more self-management and more informational elaboration. However, there are also similarities on several aspects. Professionals from both regions have similar expectations of leaders.
    Discussion: municipalities and Youth Care organizations should be aware of the influence of the organization of Youth Teams on team functioning. Future research must demonstrate which aspects of team functioning contribute to improved care for families.


Laura Nooteboom MSc
Laura Nooteboom is onderzoeker bij de Academische Werkplaats Gezin aan Zet, en promovenda bij Curium-LUMC het Academisch Centrum voor Kinder- en Jeugdpsychiatrie in Oegstgeest.

Janna Eilander MSc
Janna Eilander is onderzoeker bij de Academische Werkplaats Gezin aan Zet, bij Curium-LUMC, Academisch Centrum voor Kinder- en Jeugdpsychiatrie.

Dr. Joris van der Voet
Dr. Joris van der Voet is universitair docent aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde, faculteit Governance and Global Affairs van de Universiteit Leiden.

Dr. Ben Kuipers
Dr. Ben Kuipers is universitair hoofddocent aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde, faculteit Governance and Global Affairs van de Universiteit Leiden, en organisatieontwikkelaar en bestuurder bij Verbetervermogen in Amsterdam.

Prof. dr. Bram Steijn
Prof. dr. Bram Steijn is hoogleraar humanresourcesmanagement in de publieke sector, afdeling Bestuurskunde en Sociologie aan de Erasmus School of Social and Behavioral Sciences van de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Prof. dr. Robert Vermeiren
Prof. dr. Robert Vermeiren is directeur patientenzorg en hoofd van de afdeling Onderzoek en Onderwijs bij Curium-LUMC, Academisch Centrum voor Kinder- en Jeugdpsychiatrie.

Dr. Eva Mulder
Dr. Eva Mulder is projectleider bij de Academische Werkplaats Gezin aan Zet en Senior onderzoeker bij Curium-LUMC, Academisch Centrum voor Kinder- en Jeugdpsychiatrie.

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.
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.
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