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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.
Artikel

Het asielzoekerscentrum als buurthuis? Over vrijwilligerswerk in asielzoekerscentra in Amsterdam en Brussel

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden Asylum centres, Community centres, Refugees, Civic engagement, Interpretive policy analyses
Auteurs Rosaly Studulski en Nanke Verloo
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Citizens are being activated to organize activities in asylum centres in both the Netherlands and Belgium. That way, asylum centres are expected to become better integrated in the local context of a municipality or neighbourhood. This ideal of citizenship does not stand on its own. The policy object to integrate asylum centres in the local context has parallels with broader societal and academic discussions about citizen participation and active citizenship. The object, however, is now the asylum seeker. In this article we research how voluntary work in two asylum centres takes shape and how policy could support voluntary activities better. A comparative interpretive policy analysis of two asylum centres in Amsterdam and Brussel shows how voluntary work is stimulated by policy, how these policies are implemented locally, and how they are experienced in daily practices of volunteers and professionals. The cases reveal stark differences, but exactly those contrasts lead to important lessons. We show that because of this policy, the asylum centre is often functioning as a community centre, that integration can be strengthened by volunteers, but we are also critical when voluntary activities are driven by an ideal picture of the ‘good asylum seeker’. There is a risk that the societal responsibility for integrating and engaging asylum seekers in the local context is pushed on the shoulders of unpaid volunteers and that activities are exclusively for one group. That is why we conclude that professional support and financial resources are crucial to implement the policy ideal of active citizenship in asylum centers.


Rosaly Studulski
Rosaly Studulski, MSc. is onlangs afgestudeerd in de Research Master Urban Studies aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam en sindsdien werkzaam bij het Projectmanagementbureau van de Gemeente Amsterdam.

Nanke Verloo
Dr. Nanke Verloo is werkzaam als Universitair Docent in Stedelijke Planologie aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam en redacteur bij Beleid en Maatschappij.
Artikel

De interactielogica van verzet: een dramaturgische analyse van escalatie tijdens een informatieavond

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Protest, Governance, Participation, Dramaturgy, Interaction logic
Auteurs Sander van Haperen MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Theory about participation has long moved beyond merely informing citizens, arguing for more influential and effective instruments. Nevertheless, ‘inspraak’ remains widely implemented in Dutch practice, with mixed results. This article argues that the deliberative quality of the instrument is closely related to the performance of power. Dramaturgical concepts are employed to analyze resistance against the siting of a homeless facility in an Amsterdam neighborhood. One particular evening sets the stage for escalation, which ultimately frustrates the policy process. The analysis shows how the performance of the meeting invokes specific kinds of resistance. A different performance of ‘informing’ could potentially improve the quality of the public sphere.


Sander van Haperen MSc
Sander van Haperen MSc is promovendus Political sociology aan the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research, Universiteit van Amsterdam.
Artikel

Herstel en vertrouwen: professionals, ervaringswerkers en de herstelvisie in de Nederlandse geestelijke gezondheidszorg

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Trust, Recovery, Professionals, Peer specialists, Habermas
Auteurs Marijn Kester MSc en Mr. dr. Olivier Lingbeek
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This text wants to draw attention to the question: How do peer specialists build a bridge between the modus operandi of health care professionals and the lifeworld problems of clients receiving mental health care? The Dutch mental healthcare system has recently been host to a range of new developments. Two new trends can be distinguished, going by the name of ‘Recovery-oriented healthcare’ and the introduction of ‘Peer Specialists’. These coincide with changes in budget and organization of treatment. There is an increased awareness of the need for efficiency and cost reduction in the organization of care. The meaning and use of recovery-centered approaches and working with peer specialists remain fairly marginal enterprises due to ever increasing pressure emanating from execution of regulations and administrative procedures, and an accompanying decrease of professional autonomy. In the light of Habermas’ theoretical framework, it is an emphasis on a system-oriented organization of care that cause new approaches to barely be able to find a considerable place in the contemporary practice of mental healthcare in the Netherlands. Trust is identified as an essential foundation on the basis of which future principles of organization should be developed.


Marijn Kester MSc
Marijn Kester MSc is medisch socioloog.

Mr. dr. Olivier Lingbeek
Mr. dr. Olivier Lingbeek heeft een eigen adviesbureau op het gebied van bestuurlijke vraagstukken met betrekking tot planologie en sociologie.
Artikel

De participatiemythe; een drieluik over dubieuze beleidsassumpties

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2018
Trefwoorden politics of participation, policy assumptions,, societal resilience, Neoliberalism
Auteurs Prof. Willem Trommel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article argues that the politics of participation, as it is currently implemented in Dutch society, departs from dubious policy assumptions. The main problems relate to a controversial idea of what societal resilience is about, which in turn is a side-effect of the neoliberal conception of man and society. In particular three policy assumptions seem contested, regarding respectively the self-governance norm, the required levels of trust, and the presence of a ‘loving culture’. While discussing these three topics, the article also introduces three contributions to this special issue, which will focus in more detail on the poverty of the assumptions underlying the participation paradigm.


Prof. Willem Trommel
Prof. Willem Trommel is hoogleraar Beleid en bestuur aan de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
Artikel

De digitale kooi: administratieve uitsluiting door informatiearchitectuur in de Basisregistratie Personen

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2018
Trefwoorden Bureaucracy, Iron cage, Civil registry, ICT, Public services
Auteurs Dr. Rik Peeters en Dr. Arjan Widlak
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The Dutch Municipal Personal Records Database is an IT-innovation that enables the use of the civil registry by hundreds of (semi-)public organisations. Literature review and a case study show how this ‘basis registration’ creates a deep tension between system and lifeworld: citizens who do not fit the system’s criteria lose their access to the major part of public services. The instrumental rationality of the system simplifies the use of addresses for service delivery to one single definition, turns the consequences of address mutations into a black box, and reduces the discretionary space of street-level bureaucrats to handle with social complexities and unintended consequences of the system. This type of IT-innovations can, therefore, come to resemble a ‘digital cage’: a highly disciplining system that hinges on hardware and software design instead of Weberian rules and procedures.


Dr. Rik Peeters
Dr. Rik Peeters is professor en onderzoeker bij de afdeling bestuurskunde van CIDE in Mexico-Stad en directeur van de Brigada Kafka Foundation in Mexico.

Dr. Arjan Widlak
Arjan Widlak is directeur van de Stichting Kafkabrigade in Nederland.
Artikel

Slanker maar topzwaar, meer vrouwen maar vergrijsd: het veranderende gezicht van de rijksoverheid 2002-2015

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2018
Trefwoorden Cutbacks, Government spending, Civil servants, Public service, Open data
Auteurs Dr. Dimiter Toshkov, Eduard Schmidt MSc en Prof. dr. Caspar van den Berg
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article analyses the transformations of the Dutch civil service over the last 15 years, during which numerous cutbacks and reorganizations took place. While existing research predominantly focused on changes in the total number of civil servants, we examine how the distribution of civil servants changed in terms of rank, gender and age. We theorize four methods for shrinking the government apparatus, and for each method, we identify the possible consequences for the composition of the central civil service in terms of hierarchical make-up and of age. Our results indicate that the total number of civil servants only slightly decreased, but the decrease affected differentially the various ranks of the civil service. While at the lower ranks the number of civil servants decreased strongly, at the upper ranks the number actually increased slightly. The number of women in the civil service increased, also in the higher echelons. Regarding the age distribution, we found considerable changes, with the modal age shifting upwards with up to ten years. Altogether, the civil service has become slightly smaller, more gender-balanced, and significantly more senior (both in terms of ranks and age). The results of this study show that it is important for researchers and practitioners to look beyond the trends in the total number of civil servants and explore the deeper changes within the civil service.


Dr. Dimiter Toshkov
Dr. Dimiter Toshkov is werkzaam bij het Instituut Bestuurskunde, Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs, Universiteit Leiden.

Eduard Schmidt MSc
Eduard Schmidt MSc is werkzaam bij het Instituut Bestuurskunde, Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs, Universiteit Leiden.

Prof. dr. Caspar van den Berg
Prof. dr. Caspar van den Berg is werkzaam bij de Campus Fryslan, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.
Artikel

Iedereen kent iedereen

De invloed van kleinschaligheid en informele politiek op bestuur in Caribisch Nederland

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2017
Trefwoorden Dutch Caribbean, informal politics, Smallness, Governance, non-sovereignty
Auteurs Dr. Wouter Veenendaal
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In 2010, the three Dutch Caribbean islands of Bonaire, St. Eustatius, and Saba (the BES islands) were constitutionally integrated into the Netherlands, and were administratively reorganized on the basis of the Dutch municipal model. While this reform was anticipated to mitigate some of the governance problems of these islands, so far this expectation has remained unmet. Using the literature on the effects of smallness on the relation between formal and informal politics as a baseline, this article investigates why the new institutional structure has so far not resulted in improved governance in the Caribbean Netherlands. On the basis of three stages of field research resulting in over forty semi-structured interviews with political elites on the three islands, the analysis highlights the influence of two contextual factors – the small scale and the political culture of the postcolonial Caribbean – that have a powerful, and in many ways negative, impact on governance performance. Subsequently, the article highlights the inapplicability of the Dutch municipal model to the Dutch Caribbean islands, and also pays attention to a number of differences between the three islands, which are explained on the basis of their divergent historical and demographic trajectories, as well as differences in individual leadership.


Dr. Wouter Veenendaal
Dr. Wouter Veenendaal is werkzaam als universitair docent bij het Instituut Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden.
Artikel

Copingstrategieën bij onderwijsbestuur: over hoe onderwijsbestuurders complexe vraagstukken of dilemma’s waarderen en hanteren

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden School boards, School board governance, Coping strategies, Proactive coping, Secondary education
Auteurs Hoogleraar Edith Hooge en Alumnus Nancy Plasmans
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article is about how education administrators value complex issues or dilemmas they are confronted with in their governance practices, and which strategies they adopt to cope with them. Professional governance of school organisations was introduced gradually over the past fifteen years, and at the same time governance in education has gained in complexity and raises considerable risks, requiring more time, knowledge and expertise of education administrators. We draw on the theoretical perspective of coping to investigate the potential of education administrators to deal with the complexity, impediments and social and regulatory pressure in their daily practice. Our study consists of a comparative case study of six education administrators in secondary education. Their agency has been researched qualitatively with the help of the hierarchical model of coping strategies of Skinner and colleagues. The results show that the issues and dilemmas education administrators find most complex are about educational innovation and numbers of students enrolled. Education administrators value these issues or dilemmas hardly as threatening, and they adopt various proactive coping strategies to deal with them, such as information seeking or bargaining.


Hoogleraar Edith Hooge
Edith Hooge is hoogleraar onderwijsbestuur bij TIAS, Universiteit van Tilburg.

Alumnus Nancy Plasmans
Nancy Plasmans is alumnus van de TIAS Executive Master Management in Education en teamleider bij Heerbeeck International College, scholengroep voor voortgezet onderwijs Best-Oirschot.
Artikel

Deliberatieve democratie: ervaringen met diversiteit in burgertop Amsterdam

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2017
Trefwoorden Democracy, Summit, Dialogue, Diversity, Homogeneity
Auteurs Dr. Peer Smets en Marloes Vlind MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This paper will show how citizens’ summits in the Netherlands cope with diversity of participants and the impact of this on those initiatives. This provides insight in why diversity is hard to reach and what can be done to improve it. Presently, dissatisfaction about the Dutch democratic system is widespread. Solutions are being sought to strengthen Dutch participatory democracy. For this objective, citizens’ summits develop different kind of initiatives. However, citizens participating in these summits are a homogeneous group, namely mainly white, middle aged and highly educated. Mechanisms of exclusion, selection of candidates, homogeneous composition of the organization, and a dominating intellectual/rational way of debating are playing a role here. Citizens with different backgrounds need to be included in these initiatives to obtain a better representation of society’s voices. This notion has been strengthened by theory, which shows that diversity enables more creativity and innovation.


Dr. Peer Smets
Dr. Peer Smets is universitair docent aan de Vrije Universiteit.

Marloes Vlind MSc
Marloes Vlind MSc is docent en onderzoeker aan de Vrije Universiteit.
Artikel

Welvaart gemeten, verdeeld en verduurzaamd

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2016
Trefwoorden Welfare economics, Asymmetrical information, Situational contracting, Political theory, Behaviourism
Auteurs Prof. dr. Dik Wolfson
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This paper shows how interactive governance can be helpful in dealing with information asymmetries in the design and administration of public policy. It describes the checks and balances of a properly incentivized mechanism design of contextual or situational contracting that reveals information on diversity in demand for public intervention, deals with complexity, creates commitment to the public cause and disciplines uncooperative behavior. The contractual mode, moreover, discloses the actual trade-offs between rivalling criteria of good governance such as individual freedom, efficiency, distributional concerns and sustainability, deepening our insight in who gets – or pays for – what, when, where, how and why, as the key issues of policy analysis. Evidence from early applications is combined with suggestions for rolling out this new mode of relinking public policy, implementation and external control.


Prof. dr. Dik Wolfson
Prof. dr. Dik Wolfson is emeritus hoogleraar economie, en geniet gastvrijheid bij de afdeling Bestuurskunde en sociologie van de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
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