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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

‘Meedoen is belangrijker dan winnen’

Prijzen als exponent van de positieve bestuurskunde?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Positive Public Administration, prizes, successes
Auteurs Dr. Tom Overmans, Prof. dr. Mirko Noordegraaf en Prof. dr. Filip De Rynck
Samenvatting

    Positive Public Administration (PPA) encourages scholars to examine governance success. The appreciation of successes, however, is not new. During previous decades, awards were bestowed for exceptional performance. We analyse whether two important awards in the Netherlands and Flanders are an expression of PPA. Firstly, we find that successes are interpreted differently: in the Netherlands, one-off, trendy performances are rewarded, while in Flanders the focus is on consolidated results of long-term change processes. Secondly, we see that ‘clean’ success criteria promote a suggestion of ‘control’, whilst public settings are ambiguous and unpredictable. Finally, we conclude that prizes are primarily celebrations; little evidence is found of systematic knowledge exchange, learning and professionalisation.


Dr. Tom Overmans

Prof. dr. Mirko Noordegraaf

Prof. dr. Filip De Rynck
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
Vrij artikel

Paradox van het Pact van de Waard

Dynamische regionale samenwerking in een krimpende Hoeksche Waard

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden shrinking regions, regime theory, population decline, regional collaboration, regional strategies
Auteurs Janneke Rutgers-Zoet Msc en Dr. Tamara Metze
Samenvatting

    In several regions in the Netherlands there are declining population numbers. In those regions, administrators, companies and societal organisations often start regional collaborations in order to anticipate population decline and maintain a good quality of life. This is a logical step, but in practice the collaborating partners face challenges. For this article we analysed over a period of eight years the dynamics of cooperation in the Hoeksche Waard, a region in the province of South Holland that is dealing with a decrease in the number of inhabitants. On the basis of the regime model (Stone 1989), and by conducting qualitative research, in this exploratory study we discerned a paradox of regional cooperation in this ‘shrinking’ region: a decline of population numbers is the reason to initiate informal cooperation in networks, but the complexity of the regional agenda leads to the desire for formalisation of the collaborations in formal decision making structures. This formalisation, in its turn, leads to less commitment from the parties and makes cooperation and achieving results difficult, which increases the need for informalisation.


Janneke Rutgers-Zoet Msc

Dr. Tamara Metze
Vrij artikel

Burgerparticipatie: ontwikkelingstypen van bewonersverbanden

Interactie tussen participatieprofessionals en bewonersverbanden in beeld

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden citizen participation, self-organisation, public participation professionals, community enterprises, Amsterdam
Auteurs Dr. ir. Anna de Zeeuw, Eelco van Wijk MSc en Dr. Alex Straathof
Samenvatting

    Local authorities expect citizens to fulfil an increasing number of public services. In that context, citizen-based networks are emerging as means to fulfil a variety of public tasks, varying from supporting young entrepreneurs and strengthening social cohesion, to providing local care. In this article, we address the following questions: Which phases do community enterprises pass through in their efforts towards realising a sustainable contribution and how do participation professionals support these phases? To respond to this question, researchers followed seven community enterprises based in Amsterdam over a two-year period. We identified a typology of four development phases, with particular attention to the interaction between external participation professionals and the key persons of community enterprises. The study has practical relevance for governance of citizen participation and also raises important follow-up questions about the role of the local government.


Dr. ir. Anna de Zeeuw

Eelco van Wijk MSc

Dr. Alex Straathof
Thema-artikel

Niet meer dan een speldenprik

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Positive Public Administration, positivism, research agenda, societal impact
Auteurs Prof. dr. Willem Trommel
Samenvatting

    Willem Trommel reflects on the ambitions of Positive Public Administration. He observes that Positive Public Administration is at heart the product of a longing for positivist science and ‘real facts’ in public debate, arguing instead that a more radical overhaul of the discipline is required towards Provocative Public Administration.


Prof. dr. Willem Trommel
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
Thema-artikel

Positieve bestuurskunde: een Europese Minnowbrook (EPPA I)

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Positive Public Administration, European research, research agenda, societal impact
Auteurs Prof. dr. Geert Bouckaert
Samenvatting

    Geert Bouckaert reflects on the ambitions of Positive Public Administration within the larger European research agenda for public administration.


Prof. dr. Geert Bouckaert
Thema

Access_open Hoeder van de raad of functie zonder inhoud?

Een beschouwing op het vicevoorzitterschap van de gemeenteraad

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 3 2019
Auteurs Dr. Niels Karsten en Dr. Sabine van Zuydam
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    At the time of the ‘dualization’ of Dutch local government in 2002 the acting municipal chairman of the local council under article 77 (1) of the Dutch Municipal Act was seen as the ‘guardian of the local council’, who has a special responsibility for the functioning of the council as a whole and who can give the council a face opposite the local board. However, this role has never been given to this ‘vice-president’. This option has recently been suggested again, with the aim of promoting cooperation within the local council and facilitating the changing role of the council. In this article, the authors show that the role of the vice-president in practice is limited, although importance is attached to it and a majority of municipal councils use the power to appoint their own vice-president. For the time being the Netherlands does not seem inclined to learn from Flanders, where the council now appoints its own chairman. This is partly due to differences between the mayor’s positions in the Netherlands and in Flanders. At the same time, it cannot be ruled out that in the Netherlands too in the future more attention will be paid to the issue of the (vice-)presidency of the municipal council.


Dr. Niels Karsten
Dr. N. Karsten MA is universitair docent aan de Tilburgse School voor Politiek en Bestuur van de Universiteit van Tilburg.

Dr. Sabine van Zuydam
Dr. S. van Zuydam is als onderzoeker en docent verbonden aan de Tilburgse School voor Politiek en Bestuur van de Universiteit van Tilburg, onderzoeker en adviseur bij Necker Van Naem en redactielid van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Thema

Access_open Lokaal bestuur in Vlaanderen en Nederland: een verkennende vergelijking

Inleiding op het themanummer ‘De gemeenteraad in Vlaanderen en Nederland vergeleken’

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 3 2019
Auteurs Prof. dr. Marcel Boogers en Prof. dr. Herwig Reynaert
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    There are many good reasons to dwell a little longer on current developments in Dutch and Flemish local government and to examine what both countries can learn from each other. Despite all the differences, Flemish and Dutch municipalities have more in common than with local government in France, the United Kingdom, German Länder or Scandinavian countries. Different words are used on both sides of the border, but the duties and powers of local officials are largely the same. It is therefore a good reason to subject the local government on either side of the border to a first comparison, as a prelude to the contributions in this special issue. After an initial interpretation of the institutional and administrative differences and agreements, the editors of this special issue discuss a number of current discussions about the role and position of the municipal council in Flanders and the Netherlands. They conclude with a brief introduction to the two contributions to this special issue.


Prof. dr. Marcel Boogers
Prof. dr. M.J.G.J.A. Boogers is hoogleraar Innovatie en Regionaal Bestuur aan de Universiteit Twente, senior adviseur Openbaar Bestuur bij BMC en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Prof. dr. Herwig Reynaert
Prof. dr. H. Reynaert is hoogleraar politieke wetenschappen bij het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek van de Universiteit Gent en redactielid van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Thema

De raad in beraad

Een vergelijking en evaluatie van de formele hervormingen ter versterking van de gemeenteraad in Vlaanderen en Nederland

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 3 2019
Auteurs Dr. Tom Verhelst, Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters en Prof. dr. Koenraad De Ceuninck
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Until 2002, local government in Flanders and the Netherlands had a monistic approach. In both systems, the city council was formally the head of the board. However, due to the interplay of factors and evolutions, the influence of the council in practice was increasing. This contribution compares and evaluates the institutional reforms that have been implemented in Flanders and the Netherlands over the past decades in an attempt to reassess the role and position of the council. While Flanders opted for more limited reforms within the existing monistic system (e.g. its own chairman for the council, a special committee for intermunicipal cooperation, a procedure for restoring structural unmanageability), the Netherlands opted with dualism for a radical personnel and functional separation between council and board. Although the reforms in Flanders often seem half-hearted and councilors in the Netherlands attribute more influence to themselves, research also shows that the revaluation of the council in the Netherlands is (still) incomplete too. This theme will undoubtedly remain on the political agenda in the coming years. The authors are thinking of the development of a better statute for council members, or the functioning of the council as a democratic watchdog of the network society.


Dr. Tom Verhelst
Dr. T. Verhelst is postdoctoraal medewerker bij het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek (vakgroep politieke wetenschappen) van de Universiteit Gent.

Prof. dr. Klaartje Peters
Prof. dr. C.E. Peters is zelfstandig onderzoeker en publicist, bijzonder hoogleraar Lokaal en regionaal bestuur aan de Universiteit Maastricht en redactielid van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Prof. dr. Koenraad De Ceuninck
Prof. dr. K. De Ceuninck is politicoloog en hoogleraar bij het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek van de Universiteit Gent.
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.

    Access to affordable, decent and secure housing is under increasing pressure in countries across the world, especially in burgeoning cities. This results in displacement, exclusion and increasing housing cost burdens. This theme issue consists of a collection of papers that approach inequality on urban housing markets from different angles. In this introduction to the special issue, we provide a framework to understand these various dimensions of inequality and their interconnectedness. We identify three scales of inequality: First, at the abstract level of housing systems, market developments and housing policies contribute to increasing housing costs and a reduction in affordable housing units. Second, at the urban level we identify increasing spatial segregation between populations as well as the intertwined trends of intensifying gentrification and suburbanization of poverty. Third, at the everyday level we can identify a loss of belonging among long-term residents of changing (gentrifying) neighbourhoods, while other residents may appreciate change. This also fosters the potential for conflict and poses new challenges to professionals dealing with families in situations of poverty. We argue that emerging inequalities at these different scales need to be considered as interconnected.


Dr. Cody Hochstenbach
Dr. Cody Hochstenbach is secretaris van de redactie van Beleid en Maatschappij.

Dr. Nanke Verloo
Dr. Nanke Verloo is lid van de redactie van Beleid en Maatschappij.
Artikel

Access_open Hogere waardering voor gemengde wijk

Bewoners in Rotterdam Zuidwijk over de instroom en ingreep in hun veranderende wijk

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Perception of neighbourhood change, Diversity, Belonging, Social mix, Social housing
Auteurs Dr. ir. André Ouwehand
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This paper investigates the effects of neighbourhood change caused by the inflow of new residents in the still existing social rental stock in a post-World War II district next to the effects of the changing population as the result of urban restructuring. All residents, native Dutch and residents that belong to an ethnic minority, are critical about the occurring concentration of the latter in the existing rental housing stock. Loss of respectability and of shared norms and values of how to live in the neighbourhood play an important role in the critical stance of mostly older Dutch native residents. Residents with a migrant background criticize the concentration as a negative influence for their integration in Dutch society. Most residents support the idea of a mixed neighbourhood based on income and ethnicity. Restructuring by demolition of old social rental dwellings and new housing development for owner-occupiers is supported by most residents, based on the positive impact on the liveability. Urban restructuring has however not decreased the share of non-Dutch-native residents but it did bring more middle-class households. In the view of the residents these are ‘decent people’ as they have to work in daytime and do not linger at night in the streets.


Dr. ir. André Ouwehand
Dr. ir. André Ouwehand is gastonderzoeker OTB – Onderzoek voor de gebouwde omgeving aan de faculteit Bouwkunde van de Technische Universiteit Delft.
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.
Artikel

Politie en rechtstatelijke waarden: opvattingen van politieleiders

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden Police, Rule of law, Democratic values, Social integration, The Netherlands
Auteurs Ivo van Duijneveldt MMC (master of management Consultancy)
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Since the 1970s social integration of the police has been considered as a key element of the Dutch police. It can be understood as a strategy to realise police legitimacy. This article adresses the question whether the Dutch police still strive for police legitimacy via social integration. The article is based on a series of interviews with present and former strategic leaders of the Dutch police. The study shows how asking about police legitimacy and social integration of the police leads to more fundamental considerations about the role of the police in democratic society and about democratic values and the rule of law (‘Rechtsstaat’). The article concludes that police leaders emphasize the importance of civic liberties (freedom of speech, right to demonstrate) and equal rights. Police leaders consider the role of the police to reinforce and protect these values. In their opinion, this requires the police to be deeply rooted in society.


Ivo van Duijneveldt MMC (master of management Consultancy)
Ivo van Duijneveldt is organisatieadviseur bij Andersson Elffers Felix en buitenpromovendus aan de faculteit der rechtsgeleerdheid, vaksectie criminologie van de Radboud Universiteit.
Artikel

Access_open Voorbij de controverse: het Nederlandse neoliberalisme als onderwerp van onderzoek

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden Neoliberalism, The Netherlands, Intellectual history, Political history, Essentially contested concepts
Auteurs Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen en Dr. Bram Mellink
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The word neoliberalism has often been the object of fierce controversy in the Dutch public debate. Prominent intellectuals have equated neoliberalism with extremism and fundamentalism, with some going as far as calling it a ‘totalitarian faith’. The opposite camp in the debate has argued that neoliberalism is largely a self-invented bogeyman of the left, a swearword used by critics to engage in an intellectual witch-hunt. Of course, neoliberalism is not the only social science term suffering from a polemical status. Common concepts such as populism, socialism, nationalism or conservatism have given rise to similar lasting disagreements and comparable accusations of their derogatory use. What does appear to be exceptional about neoliberalism in the Dutch debate, is that very few conceptual and historical studies have been published on the subject. While the word neoliberalism is commonly employed in Dutch mainstream social science, many scholars seem to use the term without much further qualification. This paper explores the controversy and looks for ways to proceed beyond it. Drawing on a recent wave of international scholarship, it outlines an ideational approach to neoliberalism. After tracing the origins of the term neoliberalism, it closes with a preliminary example of an ideational analysis of Dutch neoliberalism.


Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen
Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen is Postdoc onderzoeker aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Maatschappij- en Gedragswetenschappen, Programmagroep: Geographies of Globalizations.

Dr. Bram Mellink
Dr. Bram Mellink is postdoc onderzoeker aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Capaciteitsgroep Geschiedenis.

    De manier waarop vraag naar en aanbod van arbeid bij elkaar komen, is met de komst van het internet en sociale media drastisch veranderd. Dit brengt kansen met zich mee: werkgevers kunnen zich bij de werving veel directer op potentiële werknemers richten en zijn niet meer gebonden aan de doelgroep van bijvoorbeeld een dagblad. Het geeft echter ook risico’s, omdat het tot uitsluiting van groepen kan leiden. De positieve keerzijde van deze technologische medaille is dat algoritmes en big data weliswaar nieuwe manieren van discriminatie in de hand werken, maar dat ze tevens kunnen worden ingezet om deze discriminatie te traceren en te bestrijden. In dit artikel worden beide zijden van de medaille toegelicht.


Claartje Thijs
Claartje Thijs werkt als programma-manager arbeidsmarktdiscriminatie bij het College voor de Rechten van de Mens. Daar houdt zij zich onder andere bezig met de vraag hoe digitalisering het wervings- en selectieproces beïnvloedt, met eerlijk beloningsbeleid en met trainingen voor een objectieve wervings- en selectieprocedure.
Thema-artikel ‘Uitgesproken Bestuurskunde’

Europese regelgeving: meer dan de som der delen?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden European Union, EU legislation, evaluation, implementation, European administrative networks
Auteurs Prof. dr. Ellen Mastenbroek
Samenvatting

    Evaluations of EU legislation can fulfill a key role in the European policy process. They can provide the knowledge base required for political accountability towards the electorate, and form a basis for the improvement of existing legislation. This article introduces a research agenda in the realm of the ex-post evaluation of EU legislation, which comprises two research lines. The first strand comprises research into ex post legislative evaluations conducted by the European Commission. This research is innovative, because EU policy researchers so far have barely touched upon evaluation, as a final and important stage in the EU policy cycle. By assessing evaluation critically, we can ascertain to what extent the EU’s ex-post evaluation system is more than an instrument, aimed at increasing the EU’s legitimacy. The second research strand is own evaluation research, focusing on the role of European administrative networks- intergovernmental structures that have been established to improve the implementation of EU legislation by the member states. By critically evaluating the functioning and effectiveness of these networks, I hope to be able to find out whether and under what conditions these network structures are more, than the sum of their national parts.


Prof. dr. Ellen Mastenbroek
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