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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

Consensus Democracy and Bureaucracy in the Low Countries

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden consensus democracy, bureaucracy, governance system, Lijphart, policymaking
Auteurs Frits van der Meer, Caspar van den Berg, Charlotte van Dijck e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Taking Lijphart’s work on consensus democracies as our point of departure, we signal a major shortcoming in Lijphart’s focus being almost exclusively on the political hardware of the state structure, leaving little attention for the administrative and bureaucratic characteristics of governance systems. We propose to expand the Lijphart’s model which overviews structural aspects of the executive and the state with seven additional features of the bureaucratic system. We argue that these features are critical for understanding the processes of policymaking and service delivery. Next, in order to better understand the functioning of the Netherlands and Belgium as consensus democracies, we provide a short analysis of the historical context and current characteristics of the political-administrative systems in both countries.


Frits van der Meer
Frits van der Meer, Professor Institute Public Administration, Leiden University.

Caspar van den Berg
Caspar van den Berg, Campus Fryslân, University of Groningen.

Charlotte van Dijck
Charlotte van Dijck, PhD Fellow Research Foundation Flanders (FWO), KU Leuven Public Governance Institute.

Gerrit Dijkstra
Gerrit Dijkstra, Senior Lecturer, Leiden University.

Trui Steen
Trui Steen, Professor, KU Leuven Public Governance Institute.
Article

Partijen in spagaat?

Eensgezindheid en meningsverschillen onder leden van Nederlandse politieke partijen

Tijdschrift Res Publica, Aflevering 2 2010
Trefwoorden Political parties, party members, party members survey, unity within parties, representative democracy
Auteurs Josje den Ridder, Joop van Holsteyn en Ruud Koole
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Political parties are the building blocks of representative democracy since they traditionally perform roles that are considered essential for the functioning and well-being of democracy. In the study and evaluation of the democratic system as a whole, as a general rule, parties are treated as unitary actors. Most political parties, however, are membership organizations and their external functioning is partly dependent on internal affairs, including the behavior and opinions of their members. In this paper we open the black box of parties and show on the basis of a 2008 survey among seven political parties how united or divided ordinary Dutch party members are with respect to various political issues and orientations. It is shown that most parties are rather united on most issues. They are least united on two of the most pertinent issues of today’s politics, i.e. the integration of ethnic minorities and European integration.


Josje den Ridder
Josje den Ridder (1982) is politicoloog en verbonden als onderzoekster aan het Sociaal en Cultureel Planbureau (project Continu Onderzoek Burgerperspectieven). Zij publiceert over verkiezingen en kiesgedrag, en over politieke partijen en partijleden. Zij werkt aan een dissertatieproject ‘Opvattingen en activisme van partijleden van Nederlandse politieke partijen rond de eeuwwisseling’.

Joop van Holsteyn
Joop van Holsteyn (1957) is neerlandicus en politicoloog. Hij is als universitair hoofddocent en bijzonder hoogleraar Kiezersonderzoek verbonden aan het Instituut voor Politieke Wetenschap, Universiteit Leiden. Hij publiceert over politieke participatie en electoraal gedrag, publieke opinie, opiniepeilingen en opinieonderzoek, extreem-rechts in Nederland en politieke cartoons.

Ruud Koole
Ruud Koole (1953) is historicus en politicoloog. Hij is als hoogleraar Politicologie, in het bijzonder met betrekking tot de Nederlandse politiek en haar institutionele ontwikkeling, verbonden aan het Instituut voor Politieke Wetenschap, Universiteit Leiden. Van dat instituut is hij de wetenschappelijk directeur. Hij publiceert over politieke partijen, interne partijdemocratie, partijfinanciën, en populisme.
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