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    Dutch social policies are aimed at the integration and participation of all people. This creates challenges for persons with a mental vulnerability and their neighbourhoods. Five municipalities in the province of Flevoland asked us to help them improve the move from protected living to living in the neighbourhood. We used an arts-based participatory action research design and we followed ‘hot topics’, topics that sparked people’s energy and emotion, and which led to empowerment and participation. Focusing on these topics, which initially might not seem to be closely connected to the main research topic, might produce more information, and energy to take action on it, rather than rigidly sticking with the initial research topics. In this article, we focus on the first phases of the project. The emotions that people with mental vulnerabilities expressed when talking about their dogs, led us to the core of what really mattered to them in terms of inclusive living and participation. The dog functioned as an unexpected ‘hot topic’. In a symbolic sense, ‘the dog’ stands for a diverse range of lifeworld topics that can act as a creative catalyst for social change.

    Vooraf

    Participatief actieonderzoek en responsieve evaluatie staan volop in de belangstelling bij beleidsmakers en onderzoekers. Dit type beleidsonderzoek en -evaluatie beoogt democratisch, inclusief én impactvol te zijn. Het gaat om onderzoek mét in plaats van óver mensen. En het is actiegericht: onderzoek wil bijdragen aan concrete oplossingen door met betrokkenen gezamenlijke (verbeter)acties te ontwikkelen in de praktijk, en daarop te reflecteren en van te leren. Dit alles met het oog op sociale inclusie. Het zijn mooie idealen, maar wat betekent dit in de alledaagse, vaak weerbarstige onderzoekspraktijk?

    Op 20 januari 2020 organiseerde prof. Abma daarover een symposium, getiteld ‘Responsive, Participatory Research: Past, Present and Future Perspectives’ (Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam). De rode draad op het symposium was de vraag wat goed en ethisch verantwoord participatief onderzoek is, en wat dit vraagt van onderzoekers en beleidsmakers. Drie lezingen op deze conferentie zijn nadien omgewerkt tot essays om lezers van Beleidsonderzoek Online vanuit verschillende perspectieven beter kennis te laten maken met deze vorm van onderzoek:

    Prof. Weerman en haar team focussen in hun bijdrage op het zich in de praktijk ontwikkelende onderzoeksdesign en het inzetten van creatieve methoden om participatie te bevorderen. Ze gaan na welke kwaliteitscriteria aan participatief actieonderzoek worden gesteld en hechten daarbij met name aan eisen ten aanzien van participatie, samen leren en verschil maken (zie BoO juli 2021). Ze benadrukken het belang van creativiteit en flexibiliteit.

    Prof. Abma bespreekt in haar artikel de normatieve dimensies en de ethiek van participatief actieonderzoek (zie BoO september 2020). Ze illustreert met een voorbeeld uit de crisishulpverlening aan GGZ-cliënten dat participatief actieonderzoek niet slechts een methodisch-technische exercitie is, maar een sociaal-politiek proces waarbij bestaande machtsverhoudingen verschuiven om ruimte te geven aan nieuwe stemmen en kennis. Dit omvat het zien van en stilstaan bij ethisch saillante dilemma’s en morele reflectie.

    De bijdrage van prof. Cook (zie BoO februari 2021) gaat over de weerbarstige praktijk van participatief actieonderzoek. Het doel is samen leren en voorbij geijkte oplossingen komen. Zij laat zien dat dit uitdagend is voor professionals die geconfronteerd worden met burgers die feedback geven en vragen om het (deels) loslaten van vaststaande professionele kaders. Er ontstaat dan ongemak en onzekerheid, maar zo beoogt en laat Cook overtuigend zien, deze ‘mess’ (niet meer goed weten wat goed en nodig is) is productief om te komen tot hernieuwde inzichten en innovaties.

    (Introductietekst opgesteld door prof. T. Abma)


Alie Weerman
Alie Weerman is professor of Mental Health and Society at Windesheim University of Applied Sciences. Her PhD focused on the use of experiential knowledge of professional social workers and caretakers. She practices Participatory Health Research in several organizations in healthcare and social work. She always uses experiential knowledge as a valuable ‘third source of knowledge’ in the process and results of studies

Rosalie Metze
Rosalie Metze is associate professor of Mental Health and Society at Windesheim University of Applied Sciences. Her expertise lies in topics such as outreach work, experiential knowledge, self-efficacy, and strengthening the voice of those less heard. Her goal is to always work according to the PAR principles, and gain the necessary acknowledgement for this type of research.

    Since 2003, decentralized audit offices in the Netherlands have been authorized to investigate the regularity of the administration conducted. The definition of ‘regularity’ and the scope of the regularity investigation is not described in the law or in the literature. In this article, a regularity investigation is defined as ‘testing whether the administration has complied with applicable law’. That applicable law consists of written and unwritten rules of law, and case law. Audit offices examine regularity less often than efficiency and effectiveness. However, they have started researching it more often than in the past, according to this article. Of the administrative audit office reports in 2019, 42% contained a regularity finding, conclusion or recommendation. Accountants also investigate the regularity. They do this in the context of the annual audit and limit themselves to financial regularity. The regularity audit carried out by decentralized audit offices is broader. In addition to written legal rules, it also focuses on unwritten legal rules and case law, it is not limited to financial subjects and the investigation period can be longer than one reporting year. The findings and conclusions of the audit offices regarding the lawful unlawful actions of the administration concern the consequences for citizens and companies and the consequences for the efficiency and effectiveness of the administration’s actions.


Arjan Kok
Mr. drs. A. Kok RA is sinds 2004 werkzaam bij de Rekenkamer Metropool Amsterdam, is medeauteur van de Handreiking juridische vraagstukken van de NVRR (juli 2020) en doceert het onderdeel rechtmatigheidsonderzoek binnen de postacademische cursus Rekenkameronderzoek (Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam).

    Dutch municipalities and provinces have been obliged to have an audit office or audit office function for about 20 years. How does the audit office work nowadays and what contribution does it make to decentralized administration? That is the question at the center of this article. To this end, the authors list the available knowledge about audit offices or committees and present the results of their own analysis of 982 audit reports from 234 audit offices or committees from 308 Dutch municipalities. The audit office or committee has been institutionalized in the vast majority of municipalities and in all provinces. Council members are increasingly less likely to (also) be members of this board and the output has increased slightly from approximately one to an average of one and a half surveys per year. Where initially mainly business management-oriented subjects were examined, some broadening to more policy-related themes has taken place. Municipal councilors are quite satisfied with their audit office or committee. At the same time, the actual social effects of policy are rarely measured in audit institutions. Moreover, council members make little use of audit reports in controlling the municipal board, and audit offices or committees also add little to their framework-setting role. Little is known about the extent to which the research of the audit offices makes a more objective contribution to the administration and strengthening of the functioning of the municipal council, which is also a theme for future research.


Klaartje Peters
Prof. dr. K. Peters is zelfstandig onderzoeker en publicist en bijzonder hoogleraar Lokaal en regionaal bestuur aan de Universiteit Maastricht; zij is voorzitter van de Rekenkamer Venlo en rekenkamerdirecteur in Beuningen, en redactielid van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Sabine van Zuydam
Dr. S. van Zuydam is onderzoeker bij Necker van Naem en is verbonden aan de Universiteit Twente; daarnaast is zij (plaatsvervangend) voorzitter van verschillende rekenkamercommissies en redactielid van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Thema-artikel

Grotestedenbeleid en interbestuurlijke verhoudingen

Wetenschappelijke reflectie op ‘Het grotestedenbeleid’ (1999)

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2021
Auteurs Marcel Boogers
Auteursinformatie

Marcel Boogers
Prof. dr. M.J.G.J.A. Boogers is hoogleraar Innovatie en Regionaal Bestuur aan de Universiteit Twente en onderzoeker bij Necker van Naem.
Artikel

Rebel-leren: hoe een rebelse sector tot lerend verantwoorden komt

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2021
Trefwoorden quality of care, rebels, accountability, organization/sector learning
Auteurs Annemiek Stoopendaal en Wilma van der Scheer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Healthcare is often dominated by the curative domain. Yet, for a new way of improving of and accounting for quality of care, we have to shift our focus to the care for people with disabilities. Since long, quality of care is translated into performance indicators and standards. This reductive way of measuring quality was pursued for the entire healthcare sector. Where this might fit in with hospital care, it was experienced as constraining in care for the disabled. In this sector it was seen as a poor representation of the plurality of healthcare provision. A number of ‘quality rebels’ aimed to create a more suitable and rich Quality Framework for the sector, with attention for objective, subjective and intersubjective dimensions of care. In this article, we analyze the way in which the sector has realized this aim, and we show how this rebellious sector succeeded in transforming the idea of accountability for quality of care, by emphasizing on the reflection and learning processes that take place at all levels of the sector, and beyond. A new approach which requires a continuous cycle of disrupting, creating, and maintaining institutionalized patterns of thinking and doing. It requires ‘rebel learning’.


Annemiek Stoopendaal
Dr. Annemiek Stoopendaal is organisatieantropoloog en universitair docent/senior onderzoeker, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management, sectie Health Care Governance aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Wilma van der Scheer
Dr. Wilma van der Scheer is gezondheidswetenschapper, directeur van het Erasmus Centrum voor Zorgbestuur en leider van de academische werkplaats zorgbestuur, Erasmus Centrum voor Zorgbestuur aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Artikel

Rebellerende zorgprofessionals

Improviseren met regels, passie en verantwoording

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2021
Trefwoorden healthcare rebels, administrative burden, quality of care, etnography, accountability
Auteurs Iris Wallenburg, Hester van de Bovenkamp, Anne Marie Weggelaar-Jansen e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Bureaucracy and ‘red tape’ are seen as a main annoyance in healthcare practice. ‘Rules’ like guidelines and performance indicators would withdraw professionals from their real work, that is, helping patients. However, rules may also improve quality of care if they foster high quality practices. In this research, we explore how healthcare rebels deal with rules in their everyday work: how rebels ignore, engender and bend rules to build new environments for doing good care. Drawing on ethnographic research in three hospitals in the Netherlands (2017-2018), we reveal how rebels build and care for clinical microsystems containing their own clinical unit and related contexts (e.g. pharmaceutical suppliers, ICT companies, primary care) to evoke alternative and situated practices of good care delivery – i.e. focusing on quality of life and person-centred care. Rebels enact mechanisms of decoupling and recoupling to disconnect rules that embark on good care in specific patient situations, and build new routines that foster good care. However, such caring practices are hard to generalize as they often occur ‘under the radar’ and hence remain hardly noticed to the outside world. We argue that through revising accounting processes, and paying more attention to narratives of good care, more convenient quality systems could be found.


Iris Wallenburg
Dr. Iris Wallenburg is universitair hoofddocent, sectie Health Care Governance, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Hester van de Bovenkamp
Dr. Hester van de Bovenkamp is universitair hoofddocent, sectie Health Care Governance, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Anne Marie Weggelaar-Jansen
Dr. Anne Marie Weggelaar-Jansen, MCM is universitair docent, sectie Health Services Management and Organization, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Roland Bal
Prof.dr. Roland Bal is hoogleraar beleid en bestuur van de gezondheidszorg, sectie Health Care Governance, Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
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.
Artikel

Access_open Ontwikkeling en institutionalisering van een anti-establishmentpartij

De casus Leefbaar Rotterdam

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2021
Trefwoorden party institutionalization, political parties, local government, Governance, anti-establishment party
Auteurs Gideon Broekhuizen en Julien van Ostaaijen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    There is much research available about the development and government participation of new political parties (e.g. Pedersen, 1982; Deschouwer, 2008). Scholars show that survival for new political parties is often difficult, as they in general had little time for party building (Bollyer & Bytzek, 2017). Moreover, the expectation for specific types of new parties, mainly anti-establishment parties, is that they pay a high(er) electoral price when participating in government (Van Spanje, 2011). The Dutch case of the local political party of ‘Leefbaar Rotterdam’ (Livable Rotterdam, LR) is a noteworthy exception to this rule. It won the Rotterdam local election in 2002 with almost 35 percent of the votes, only months after its establishment. Until this day, LR remains an electorally large and relevant political party, participating in Rotterdam government twice (2002-2006 and 2014-2018). The article shows that in comparison to some national new political parties, LR succeeded in building a solid party organization and that from a party institutionalization perspective, it can be considered an institutionalized party. Regarding theory, it provides some additions to party building literature, such as the importance of personal relations and the balance between organizational unity and member autonomy.


Gideon Broekhuizen
Gideon Broekhuizen MSc LLB is werkzaam als beleidsadviseur bij het ministerie van Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport.

Julien van Ostaaijen
Dr. Julien van Ostaaijen is werkzaam als universitair docent bestuurskunde aan Tilburg University en lector Recht en Veiligheid bij Avans Hogeschool.
Vrij artikel

Weerbarstige lokale inpassing van geo-energieprojecten

‘Localism’ en ‘soft power’ als handelingsperspectief voor gemeenten?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2021
Trefwoorden subsoil interventions, network management, Localism, Participation
Auteurs Dr. ir. Geert Roovers en Dr. Mike Duijn
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Subsoil interventions in the Netherlands are crucial elements in the transition to a sustainable energy future. These subsoil interventions concern reduction of fossil energy mining, extraction of thermal energy, energy storage and CSS storage. These geo projects cause tensions. Planning under the mining law leads to local resistance, debate and often delay or cancelling of initiatives. The central characteristics of this planning are an important cause. As the transition to sustainable energy asks for more interventions in the subsoil, these tensions get problematic, and hinder the transition. In this article we investigate this problematic nature of planning under the mining law. In examples we show the problems, and accordingly we analyse them. We explore a more prominent role of local actors, using localism and soft power. With this article we want contribute to national and international discussions about the planning and governance of subsoil initiatives and strengthening of local involvement in these.


Dr. ir. Geert Roovers
Dr. ir. G. Roovers is lector Bodem en ondergrond aan de Saxion hogeschool en senior adviseur bij Antea Group.

Dr. Mike Duijn
Dr. M. Duijn is senior onderzoeker en managing director GovernEUR, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Thema-artikel

Access_open Bestuurlijke manie bij prestigeprojecten: van maquette naar mislukking

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2021
Trefwoorden managerial mania, prestigious projects, behavioural public administration, mega projects, checks and balances
Auteurs Dr. Wouter Jan Verheul en Dr. Meike Bokhorst
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Prestigious urban projects demonstrate many insights in the functioning of public administration. Especially, prestigious urban projects can teach us about what we call ‘managerial mania’. Following the perspective of behavioural public administration, this article observes significant characteristics of managerial mania, such as elated behaviour, an exaggerated positive self-image, infectious enthusiasm, selective argumentation, tunnel vision, and an unsubstantiated faith that plans will succeed. As a consequence of managerial mania, prestigious projects are at risk of cost overruns, project fiascos, or underdelivering the expected outcomes promised by politicians or top-level managers. This article explores the phenomenon of managerial mania based on examples of large and controversial urban projects. Furthermore, this article describes and analyses the symptoms of managerial mania, its implications, and its mechanisms. Finally, the authors suggest some means of restraining the most extreme forms of managerial mania.


Dr. Wouter Jan Verheul
Dr. W.J. Verheul is als universitair docent en onderzoeker verbonden aan de afdeling Urban Development Management van de Technische Universiteit Delft en is daarnaast zelfstandig adviseur te Rotterdam.

Dr. Meike Bokhorst
Dr. A.M. Bokhorst is senior onderzoeker bij de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid (WRR) en is tevens verbonden aan de Universiteit Utrecht.
Thema-artikel

Verantwoorde algoritmisering: zorgen waardengevoeligheid en transparantie voor meer vertrouwen in algoritmische besluitvorming?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2020
Trefwoorden algorithms, algorithmization, value-sensitivity, transparency, trust
Auteurs Dr. Stephan Grimmelikhuijsen en Prof. dr. Albert Meijer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Algorithms are starting to play an increasingly prominent role in government organizations. The argument is that algorithms can make more objective and efficient decisions than humans. At the same time, recent scandals have highlighted that there are still many problems connected to algorithms in the public sector. There is an increasing emphasis on ethical requirements for algorithms and we aim to connect these requirements to insights from public administration on the use of technologies in the public sector. We stress the need for responsible algorithmization – responsible organizational practices around the use of algorithms – and argue that this is needed to maintain the trust of citizens. We present two key components of responsible algorithmization – value-sensitivity and transparency – and show how these components connect to algorithmization and can contribute to citizen trust. We end the article with an agenda for research into the relation between responsible algorithmization and trust.


Dr. Stephan Grimmelikhuijsen
Dr. S.G. Grimmelikhuijsen is universitair hoofddocent Publiek Management aan de Universiteit Utrecht, Departement Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap.

Prof. dr. Albert Meijer
Prof. dr. A.J. Meijer is hoogleraar Publiek Management aan de Universiteit Utrecht, Departement Bestuurs- en Organisatiewetenschap.
Artikel

Access_open Een ontspannen perspectief op residentiële segregatie

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2020
Trefwoorden residential segregation, Framing, welfare regimes, structural factors, individual preferences
Auteurs Prof. dr. Sako Musterd
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the Netherlands and surrounding countries, there is reason to ask the question whether levels of segregation according to country of origin (mainly non-western) and in terms of socioeconomic position (mainly social arrears) are sufficiently high to legitimate anti-segregation policy. When will segregation become problematic? If segregation is regarded a problem, what, then, would be the best remedy? Spatial intervention? Or broader societal intervention? In this article developments and mechanisms will be discussed that lead to segregation; also political views on segregation and the framing of segregation will be scrutinized. A confrontation of knowledge, insights, visions, and framings offers material for new perspectives on residential segregation and is reason to argue for a more relaxed attitude towards segregation. We should acknowledge that the process of matching households to residential environments results in some – generally unproblematic – segregation. Only if segregation causes problems that pass certain intensity and/or a certain spatial range, non-spatial or spatial interventions are becoming a necessity. Levels of segregation are relatively moderate still. We ought to be more aware of the fact that strong negative framing actually stimulates segregation, social exclusion, division, discrimination, marginalisation, stigmatisation, fear, estrangement, and the development of first- and second-rate citizens.


Prof. dr. Sako Musterd
Prof. dr. Sako Musterd is hoogleraar stadsgeografie aan het Centre for Urban Studies, Universiteit van Amsterdam. www.uva.nl/profiel/s.musterd
Artikel

Moreel persoon of moreel manager?

Een kwantitatieve analyse van de aan burgemeesters gestelde integriteitseisen, 2008-2019

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2020
Trefwoorden ethical leadership, moral management, Integrity, Mayors, The Netherlands
Auteurs Simon Jacobs BSc en Dr. Niels Karsten
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Dutch mayors are expected to act both as moral person and as moral managers. However, the extent to which council members express such requirements when selecting candidates remains underexplored. To identify possible changes in these expectations following the implementation of a 2016 integrity law, which made the mayor responsible for ‘advancing the administrative integrity of the municipality’, the current article quantitatively analyses 349 vacancy texts for Dutch mayoralty for the time period 2008-2019. Unexpectedly, the authors find that moral person requirements still feature prominently in job advertisements, but that attention is declining. In addition, they find a significant shift from moral-person requirements to moral-management requirements, which indicates that vacancy texts mirror the increasing importance of moral leadership requirements for Dutch mayors. Further, whereas the complex integrity concept requires tailoring to the unique circumstances in municipalities, the authors find that councilors make little effort to provide their own definition of integrity in vacancy texts, which leaves ample room for local customization.


Simon Jacobs BSc
Simon Jacobs MSc, is alumnus Public Governance, Tilburg University.

Dr. Niels Karsten
Dr. Niels Karsten is universitair docent aan het Tilburg Institute of Governance, Tilburg University.
Artikel

De energietransitie: wie kunnen, willen en mogen er meedoen?

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2020
Trefwoorden renewable energy policies, energy poverty, environmental justice, social resilience
Auteurs Dr. Sylvia Breukers, Dr. Susanne Agterbosch en Dr. Ruth Mourik
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article we discuss the role and position of different types of low income households in Dutch renewable energy transition processes using the concept of energy poverty. We explore which benefits and/or (dis)advantages (unintentionally) result from energy policies and regulations. And to what extent the distribution of these (dis)advantages benefit the position of different types of households. To this end we present an analytical perspective that enables us to evaluate renewable energy transition policies and governance on procedural and distributional aspects: paying attention to issues of recognition, equity and justice. The perspective draws on ideas in environmental justice literature and on ideas in social resilience literature. Combining these ideas in a new analytical framework proved to be useful in articulating some major policy challenges in relation to energy poverty in the Netherlands today.


Dr. Sylvia Breukers
Dr. Sylvia Breukers is onderzoeker en partner bij Duneworks. www.duneworks.nl/team-nl/dr-sylvia-breukers/

Dr. Susanne Agterbosch
Dr. Susanne Agterbosch is plaatsvervangend directeur van het PON&Telos. https://hetpon.nl/wie-we-zijn/dr-susanne-agterbosch-2/

Dr. Ruth Mourik
Dr. Ruth Mourik is onderzoeker en partner bij Duneworks. www.duneworks.nl/team-nl/dr-ruth-mourik/
Article

Political Sophistication and Populist Party Support

The Case of PTB-PVDA and VB in the 2019 Belgian Elections

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2020
Trefwoorden populist voters, political sophistication, voting motivations, Belgium, elections
Auteurs Marta Gallina, Pierre Baudewyns en Jonas Lefevere
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article, we investigate the moderating role of political sophistication on the vote for populist parties in Belgium. Building on the literature about the diverse determinants of populist party support, we investigate whether issue considerations and populism-related motivations play a bigger role in the electoral calculus of politically sophisticated voters.
    Using data from the 2019 general elections in Belgium, we focus on the cases of Vlaams Belang (VB) and Parti du Travail de Belgique- Partij van de Arbeid (PTB-PVDA). We find evidence suggesting that political sophistication enhances the impact of populism-related motivations on populist party support, although the effects are contingent on the party. Moreover, we show that, for issue considerations, the moderation effect only comes into play for VB voters: the impact of anti-immigrant considerations is greater at increasing levels of political sophistication.


Marta Gallina
Marta Gallina is a PhD Student at the Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium. She obtained her BA and MA in Social Sciences at the University of Milan. Her research interests regard the study of political behaviour, political sophistication, issue dimensionality, populism and Voting Advice Applications. Her work appeared in scientific journals such as Statistics, Politics and Policy, Environmental Politics and Italian Political Science.

Pierre Baudewyns
Pierre Baudewyns is Professor of political behaviour at UCLouvain. He is involved in different projects (voters, candidates) related to National Election Study. Results of his research have been published in Electoral Studies, European Political Science, Regional & Federal Studies, West European Politics and Comparative European Politics.

Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is research professor of political communication at the Institute for European Studies and assistant professor of communication at Vesalius College. Since 2018, he is also vice-chair of the ECPR Standing Group on Political Communication. His research interests deal with the communication strategies of political parties, and the effects of election campaigns on voters’ electoral behaviour. He has published on these topics in, amongst others, Electoral Studies, Public Opinion Quarterly, Political Communication and International Journal of Public Opinion Research.
Article

Drivers of Support for the Populist Radical Left and Populist Radical Right in Belgium

An Analysis of the VB and the PVDA-PTB Vote at the 2019 Elections

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2020
Trefwoorden populism, voting, behaviour, Belgium, elections
Auteurs Ine Goovaerts, Anna Kern, Emilie van Haute e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This study investigates how protest attitudes and ideological considerations affected the 2019 election results in Belgium, and particularly the vote for the radical right-wing populist party Vlaams Belang (VB) and for the radical left-wing populist party Partij van de Arbeid-Parti du Travail de Belgique (PVDA-PTB). Our results confirm that both protest attitudes and ideological considerations play a role to distinguish radical populist voters from mainstream party voters in general. However, when opposed to their second-best choice, we show that particularly protest attitudes matter. Moreover, in comparing radical right- and left-wing populist voters, the article disentangles the respective weight of these drivers on the two ends of the political spectrum. Being able to portray itself as an alternative to mainstream can give these parties an edge among a certain category of voters, albeit this position is also difficult to hold in the long run.


Ine Goovaerts
Ine Goovaerts is a Doctoral Candidate of the Democratic Innovations and Legitimacy Research Group at the University of Leuven. Her research focuses on the quality of political discourse, with a specific focus on incivility and argumentation quality.

Anna Kern
Anna Kern is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Political Science of Ghent University. Her research focuses on political participation, political equality and political legitimacy. Her work has been published in journals such as West European Politics, Local Government Studies, Social Science Research and Political Behavior.

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, European Political Science and Acta Politica. She is co-editor of Acta Politica.

Sofie Marien
Sofie Marien is Associate Professor at the University of Leuven, where she is director of the Democratic Innovations and Legitimacy Research Group. Her research has appeared in journals such as Political Behavior, European Journal of Political Research, European Sociological Review and Political Research Quarterly.
Article

Access_open Voters of Populist Parties and Support for Reforms of Representative Democracy in Belgium

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2020
Trefwoorden Belgian politics, democratic reforms, elections, populist voters, representative democracy
Auteurs Lisa van Dijk, Thomas Legein, Jean-Benoit Pilet e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Recently, studies have burgeoned on the link between populism and demands for democratic reforms. In particular, scholars have been debating the link between populist citizens or voters and support for referendums. In this article, we examine voters of populist parties (Vlaams Belang (VB) and Parti du Travail de Belgique-Partij van de Arbeid (PTB-PVDA)) in Belgium in 2019 and we look at their attitudes towards various types of democratic reforms. We find that voters of populist parties differ from the non-populist electorate in their support for different kinds of reforms of representative democracy. Voters of VB and PTB-PVDA have in common stronger demands for limiting politicians’ prerogatives, for introducing binding referendums and for participatory budgeting. While Vlaams Belang voters are not significantly different from the non-populist electorate on advisory referendums, citizens’ forums or technocratic reform, PVDA-PTB voters seem more enthusiastic.


Lisa van Dijk
Lisa van Dijk (corresponding author), KU Leuven.

Thomas Legein
Thomas Legein, Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB).

Jean-Benoit Pilet
Jean-Benoit Pilet, Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB).

Sofie Marien
Sofie Marien, KU Leuven.
Article

Emotions and Vote Choice

An Analysis of the 2019 Belgian Elections

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2020
Trefwoorden Belgium, elections, emotions, voting behaviour
Auteurs Caroline Close en Emilie van Haute
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article digs into the relationship between voters’ political resentment and their electoral choice in 2019 by focusing on the respondents’ emotions towards politics. Using the RepResent 2019 voter survey, eight emotions are analysed in their relation to voting behaviour: four negative (anger, bitterness, worry and fear) and four positive (hope, relief, joy and satisfaction). We confirm that voters’ emotional register is at least two-dimensional, with one positive and one negative dimension, opening the possibility for different combinations of emotions towards politics. We also find different emotional patterns across party choices, and more crucially, we uncover a significant effect of emotions (especially negative ones) on vote choice, even when controlling for other determinants. Finally, we look at the effect of election results on emotions and we observe a potential winner vs. loser effect with distinctive dynamics in Flanders and in Wallonia.


Caroline Close
Caroline Close is Assistant Professor at the Université libre de Bruxelles (Charleroi campus). Her research and teaching interests include party politics, representation and political participation from a comparative perspective. She has published her work in Party Politics, Political Studies, Parliamentary Affairs, The Journal of Legislative Studies, Representation, Acta Politica and the Journal of European Integration. She regularly contributes to research and publications on Belgian politics.

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, European Political Science and Acta Politica. She is co-editor of Acta Politica.
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.
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