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Bestuurders: onderbelicht, maar onder het vergrootglas

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden boards, board capacity, good governance, public sector, inspection
Auteurs Dr. Marieke van Genugten en Dr. Marlies Honingh
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The number of boards in the public domain has risen sharply in recent decades and so has the number of reports containing guidelines for effective and good governance. The question, however, is what this flow of advice is based on and what we actually know about board capacity. In this paper, we discuss theoretical expectations on boards, recent developments in governance based inspection, and empirical research on this topic. All in all, it appears that relatively little empirical research is conducted into boards in the public domain. And the research that is available is as yet not very optimistic. Based on these observations, we conclude that it is necessary to re-examine the policy assumptions with regard to board capacity in the public domain.


Dr. Marieke van Genugten
Dr. M.L. van Genugten is universitair docent bij de sectie Bestuurskunde van de Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen van de Radboud Universiteit.

Dr. Marlies Honingh
Dr. M.E. Honingh is universitair hoofddocent bij de sectie Bestuurskunde van de Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen van de Radboud Universiteit.
Vrij artikel

Autonomie ontrafeld. De casus van de Nederlandse Kinderombudsman

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden autonomy, ombudsperson, children’s ombudsman, national ombudsman, Paris Principles
Auteurs Marjolein Bouterse MSc en Dr. Valérie Pattyn
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    A key factor to a well-functioning ombudsman’s office is autonomy, which can also be derived from the public turmoil surrounding the appointment of Dutch Children’s ombudsman in 2016. Organization-wise, the Dutch Children’s ombudsman is embedded within an existing autonomous institution: the National ombudsman. This triggers the question to what extent such nested constructions can guarantee sufficient autonomy. Viewing the statutory and de facto autonomy of the Children’s ombudsman, we find that the autonomy of the Children’s ombudsman depends to a large extent on the position of the National ombudsman and on the relationship between the National ombudsman and the Children’s ombudsman. Our findings point out that it is necessary to determine and codify the degree of autonomy at the start of an ombudsman’s office.


Marjolein Bouterse MSc
M. Bouterse, MSc werkte na haar studie Bestuurskunde bij de Universiteit Leiden mee aan de Wetsevaluatie Kinderombudsman. Momenteel werkt zij als beleidsonderzoeker bij Regioplan Beleidsonderzoek, waar zij zich focust op arbeidsre-integratie en schuldhulpverlening.

Dr. Valérie Pattyn
Dr. V.E. Pattyn is universitair docent aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde van Universiteit Leiden, en is deeltijds verbonden aan KU Leuven Instituut voor de Overheid. Ze specialiseert zich in thema’s als het gebruik van kennis door overheden, beleidsevaluatie, beleidswerk, beleidsadvisering en beleidscapaciteit.
Vrij artikel

Evalueren en leren van ICT-projecten

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden evaluation, evaluation methods, IT-projects, learning, content analysis
Auteurs Dr. Wouter Bronsgeest en Prof. dr. ir. Rex Arendsen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Governmental IT-projects regularly make the news due to issues about the quality of end results, planning or costs. The Elias report, which is based upon a Parliamentary Inquiry, recommends to evaluate more and learn from the outcomes of these evaluations. However, the report does not give guidance on how to evaluate. The question thus remains: what constitutes a good evaluation of governmental ICT-projects, and what characteristics should be addresses in evaluation research. After careful study of various scientific disciplines, the researchers developed an extensive reference model, including additional suggestions for defining methods, the evaluation process, and criteria on how to evaluate an evaluation. After using this reference model in a content-analytical document analysis, it became clear that many evaluation reports are not being shared with other professionals or practitioners, that reports often lack a specifically formulated research question, and that conclusions and additional reflections are limited. There is room for considerable improvement in the evaluation of ICT-projects.


Dr. Wouter Bronsgeest
Dr. W.L. Bronsgeest is verbonden aan het Center for eGovernment Studies (CFES) van de Universiteit Twente, en duovoorzitter van de Koninklijke Nederlandse Vereniging van ICT- en Informatieprofessionals (KNVI). Hij is tevens werkzaam als lid van het managementteam van de Directie IV van de Belastingdienst.

Prof. dr. ir. Rex Arendsen
Prof. dr. ir. R. Arendsen is als hoogleraar Maatschappelijke en historische context van belastingrecht verbonden aan de Universiteit Leiden. Hij is tevens werkzaam als adviseur bij het Centre for Tax Policy and Administration bij de OESO in Parijs.
Thema-artikel

Open (de) deuren

Bestuurskundig onderzoek naar de succesfactoren van de werkrelatie burgemeester-gemeentesecretaris

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden political, administrative, collaborative, relationship, success factors
Auteurs Drs. Frans-Willem van Gils MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The collaborative relationship between the appointed mayor and the non-political highest administrative official is a crucial one in Dutch local government. It aligns two different domains or spheres: the political, decision making domain on one hand, and the administrative, executive domain on the other. Since research points out that 25% of these collaborative relations fail, the need for insight in the factors that shape the relations and the success of it emerges. Non-successful collaboration between public top-officials usually results in financial, societal or personal costs or damage. In this research, 17 factors were indicated that influence the (perceived) collaborative success, divided in three levels: external factors, functional factors and personal factors. Within the success factors, several ‘critical’ factors were determined, without which a successful collaborative relationship never is possible. On the functional level the critical factors are trust, role convergence and shared understanding, and on the personal level consistency and integrity. Best guaranty for a successful collaborative relationship is when both actors adapt their roles to each other’s liking, reciprocally building trust and shared understanding by using open communication, while being consistent and maintaining their integrity.
    Finally, officials are being called upon to open their doors, and share valuable experiences.


Drs. Frans-Willem van Gils MSc
Drs. F.W. van Gils behaalde in 2019 de graad van Master of Science in Public Administration aan de Erasmus University Rotterdam met een onderzoek naar de succesfactoren van de werkrelatie tussen burgemeester en gemeentesecretaris. Hij is oud-burgemeester en thans directeur van Archon Consultancy. Hij adviseert en coacht topwerkrelaties in het openbaar bestuur, doet onderzoek naar politiek-ambtelijke samenwerkingsrelaties, en draagt met trainingen, lezingen en onderwijs bij aan deskundigheidsbevordering.
Thema-artikel

Succesvol wethouderschap onder de loep

Bronnen van legitimiteit in de ogen van inwoners, raadsleden en wethouders

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden Aldermen, Local government, Success, Politics, Legitimacy
Auteurs Drs. Peter Verheij
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Research into successful alderman is scarce. Scientifically less is known about the perspective of residents and council members on (successful) aldermen. A recent study investigated the sources of legitimacy that successful aldermen draw on. In addition, the contribution of characteristics of local political leadership to successful alderman has been examined. Based on a survey of residents, councilors and aldermen, differences in opinions about aldermen, aspects and indicators of legitimacy and personal characteristics were uncovered. There are clear differences in judgment, indicators and personal characteristics that are considered important and another source on which the judgment is based. This provides interesting and new research material for public administration literature as well as for administrative practice. The view of residents learns us that the distance to aldermen must be reduced, more connection must be made, a more outside view must be taken and an addition to the management style of councilors with responsive qualities is required.


Drs. Peter Verheij
Drs. P.J. Verheij RA is wethouder in de gemeente Alblasserdam en lid van de Raad voor het Openbaar Bestuur. Hij rondde recent een executive Master Bestuur en Beleid af aan de Universiteit Utrecht (USBO) met een onderzoek over succesvol wethouderschap. Dit artikel is een samenvatting van het betreffende onderzoek.

Peter Marks

Lasse Gerrits
Thema-artikel

Gezag volgens een doorgewinterde tussenpaus

Interview met gemeentesecretaris Boudewijn Marinussen

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2020
Trefwoorden authority, municipal secretary, local governance, sources of authority, loss of
Auteurs Drs. Gerard van Nunen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Boudewijn Marinussen feels right at home working in local governance. He has a deep understanding of the balancing act required by the municipal secretary due to his rich experience in local governance. Marinussen’s work as an entrusted person at the Association of Municipal Secretaries entails being a voice for his colleagues’ opinions. In this interview he will ponder the following questions: which sources of authority are essential? What causes a loss in authority, and can this loss be recommended? On the basis of Marinussen’s direct personal experience in local governance and his experience as an entrusted person, he concludes that in cases where authority is coming under pressure, too little is done to ensuring a fast recovery of authority. His advice would be to start earlier with conversations that quicken the healing process.


Drs. Gerard van Nunen
Drs. G.P.M. van Nunen is bestuurskundige en werkt als projectleider en onderzoeker bij onderzoeks- en kennisinstituut Stichting Beroepseer. Hij werkt aan publicaties, onderzoeken en bijeenkomsten over professionaliteit en gezag in de (semi)publieke sector.
Dissertatie

Rules for Watt?

Designing appropriate governance arrangements for the introduction of smart grids

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Auteurs Imke Lammers

Imke Lammers
Thema-artikel

Het klimaat en het subject

Waarom Foucault een bestuurskundige klassieker is

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden climate change, climate policy, power, Foucault, governmentality
Auteurs Dr. Shivant Jhagroe
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This paper discusses how Michel Foucault’s governmentality approach contributes to our understanding of the climate crisis and climate policy. After adopting a governmentality approach to the domain of climate change, the paper highlights how this approach contrasts with dominant conceptions of governance in Public Administration. Finally, the paper argues that Foucault is an innovative and important thinker and should be considered a classic for critical governance researchers.


Dr. Shivant Jhagroe
Dr. S. S. Jhagroe is als universitair docent verbonden aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde, Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs, Universiteit Leiden.
Thema-artikel

Tegendraads betrokken

De bijdrage van de complexiteitstheorie aan bestuur en bestuurskunde

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden complexity theory, machine, simplification, complex systems, critical public administration
Auteurs Hans Joosse MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Complexity theory dares to adopt a critical-constructive attitude to the practice and science of public administration. From the worldview of complex systems, it raises questions about the machine thinking that has influenced public administration strongly and persistently. Many contemporary attempts by governments to simplify societal issues to knowable, solvable and controllable problems – for example the approach to transforming Utrecht Central Station and dealing with multi-dimensional problems in families – can be traced back to machine thinking. Complexity theory points to the ineffectiveness and undesirability of simplifications and considers the complexity of government and society a quality that should be increased rather than reduced. Complexity theory not only keeps the administrative mind sharp on simplification reflexes, but also offers the option to make policy by increasing, rather than reducing complexity.


Hans Joosse MSc
J.A. Joosse, MSc is promovendus aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam, Department of Public Administration and Sociology.
Thema-artikel

Access_open Kritische bestuurskunde

Naar een reflexief perspectief op bestuur en beleid

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Critical Public Administration, Reflexive knowledge, Instrumental knowledge, Public Values
Auteurs Robert van Putten MSc MA, Lars Dorren MA MSc en Prof. dr. Willem Trommel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Over the past four decades of its existence, Dutch public administration has developed into a science which mainly produces knowledge that either caters to a very specific scientific niche or aims to optimize policy processes in an instrumental fashion. This type of knowledge is not well equipped to provide answers or improve understanding of the challenges of our time. We argue that public administration needs to shift its focus more towards producing reflexive knowledge in the form of what we would call critical public administration. Based on the contributions in this special issue, this article outlines what the contribution of such a critical public administration could be. The article shows that, even though it is theory driven, critical public administration is close to policy practice and can fuel a productive public debate by imagining alternative futures.


Robert van Putten MSc MA
R.J. van Putten MSc MA is promovendus aan de afdeling Bestuurswetenschappen en Politicologie, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

Lars Dorren MA MSc
L. Dorren MA MSc is promovendus aan de onderzoeksgroep Politics & Public Governance, Universiteit Antwerpen.

Prof. dr. Willem Trommel
Prof. dr. W.A. Trommel is hoogleraar Bestuur en beleid aan de afdeling Bestuurswetenschappen en Politicologie, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
Vrij artikel

20 jaar Verantwoordingsdag: Inzicht voor Kamercommissies

Hoe inhoudsanalyse inzicht geeft in prestatiegegevensgebruik door Kamerleden

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden performance information, accountability, Parliament, annual reports, Performance-based Budgeting
Auteurs Dr. Sjoerd Keulen
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The 20th Accountability Day of the Netherlands House of Representatives is a fitting occasion to investigate whether Dutch Members of Parliament use performance information (PI). Performance information used by managers and politicians is a basic assumption for managing and guiding Performance-based Budgeting. Ironically, based on a literature review on performance use, we know that politicians and especially parliamentarians do not use performance information for decision making or scrutiny. This is specifically so when PI reports are long. Using the framework of accountability of Bovens (2007) and using content analysis of the questions, motions and debates of the Standing Committees on the annual reports, this article shows that MPs use performance information in all phases (informing, debating, sanctions). Contradicting earlier research on parliamentarians, we found that they use annual reports and reports of the Court of Audit as their main sources in the debates. This article shows that the use of PI in parliament is steadily rising. The growing importance of performance information for accountability is further illustrated by the strengthening of the accountability forum.


Dr. Sjoerd Keulen
Dr. S.J. Keulen is onderzoeker bij de Algemene Rekenkamer en universitair docent Bestuurskunde aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Thema-artikel

Kritisch bestuurskundig onderwijs

Een pleidooi voor productieve subversiviteit

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden Public Administration, critical theory, education, subversive
Auteurs Dr. Mark van Ostaijen en Dr. Shivant Jhagroe
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    By analysing the current self-presentation of educational programs, this article problematizes the dominating instrumental knowledge within Public Administration. By foregrounding ‘productive subversion’, the authors provide a perspective on more reflexive types of knowledge and methods, to re-value educational programs within Public Administration.


Dr. Mark van Ostaijen
Dr. M.A.C. van Ostaijen is universitair docent aan het Departement Bestuurskunde en Sociologie van de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Dr. Shivant Jhagroe
Dr. S. S. Jhagroe is universitair docent aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde, Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs, Universiteit Leiden.
Vrij artikel

Ontwerpprincipes voor betere burgerparticipatie

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2020
Trefwoorden citizen participation, equality, law-making, local policy
Auteurs Dr. Menno Hurenkamp en Prof. dr. Evelien Tonkens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Citizen participation is a regular feature of recent legislation and policymaking. However, more often than not, the goals of participation remain implicit. As a consequence, exclusion mechanisms well known from the literature keep coming back. A current example is the Dutch Environment and Planning Act, which is expected to enter into force in 2021. In this article we use this Act to identify the exclusion mechanisms at work and suggest an alternative wording.


Dr. Menno Hurenkamp
Dr. M. Hurenkamp is publicist en is als politicoloog verbonden aan de Universiteit voor Humanistiek en de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Prof. dr. Evelien Tonkens
Prof. dr. E. Tonkens is hoogleraar Burgerschap en humanisering van de publieke sector aan de Universiteit voor Humanistiek.
Vrij artikel

Weinig consistent, beperkt zelfkritisch

De uitwerking van de beleidsconclusie binnen de rijksverantwoording

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden accountability, policy evaluation, policy conclusion
Auteurs Bram Faber MA en Dr. Tjerk Budding
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The Dutch central government has a long history in its search to meaningfully present policy effects. One of the instruments that was developed to this end is the Policy Conclusion (beleidsconclusie). This part of the annual report, which has been mandatory since 2013, should provide a judgement for every policy article on its results in the year 2017. To what extent has the Policy Conclusion been successful in its aims? And how do various governmental departments give substance to it? For this article, all policy conclusions that were composed for the most recent reporting year were examined. Among others, our analysis shows that departments differ greatly in their interpretation of what the Policy Conclusion should include, such as the usage of sources and the way in which intended results are (re)addressed. In addition, it was found in the Policy Conclusions that a tendency exists to put a strong focus on positive outcomes.


Bram Faber MA
A.S.C. Faber MA is promovendus bij het Zijlstra Center van de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

Dr. Tjerk Budding
Dr. G.T. Budding is opleidingsdirecteur van de public controllersopleidingen van het Zijlstra Center van de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
Thema-artikel

Access_open Onafhankelijk onderzoek in positie, oordeelsvorming en beeldvorming

Institutionele en professionele dimensies van ‘speaking truth to power’

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden Independent Research, Policy Evaluation, Organisational Culture, Public Policy, Quality Management
Auteurs Dr. Peter van der Knaap, Dr. Meike Bokhorst en Dr. Yvonne Kleistra
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Regularly, doubts about the independence of research leads to heated discussion. This is especially true if things have gone wrong. This issue explores the question how research organizations and researchers can defend themselves against improper influence: the conscious and active pursuit of too positive research results by commissioners or government officials. This article outlines a number of dimensions of how establishing good, independent research can be structured in a systematic and sensible manner. Independent inquiry manifests itself in position, judgment, and appearance or image. Institutional safeguards form the basis for professional roles and responsibilities that can fulfill the requirements of independent research in the political arena.


Dr. Peter van der Knaap
Dr. P. van der Knaap is directeur-bestuurder van SWOV, voorzitter van Vide en redactielid van Bestuurskunde.

Dr. Meike Bokhorst
Dr. A.M. Bokhorst is onderzoeker bij de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid en bij de Universiteit Utrecht.

Dr. Yvonne Kleistra
Dr. Y. Kleistra is universitair docent aan de Universiteit Leiden en redactielid van Bestuurskunde.
Thema-artikel

Van procedure naar praktijk

Inzet op effectieve onafhankelijkheidsborging bij het Planbureau voor de Leefomgeving

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden policy research organizations, research independence, political pressure, coping strategies, independence safeguards
Auteurs Dr. Femke Verwest, Dr. Eva Kunseler, Dr. Paul Diederen e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    If the stakes are high, policy researchers can find themselves under strong pressures from politicians or policy makers to compromise on issues like scope of a research project, research methodology, reporting, framing and interpretation of results, and timing of publication. Research organizations experiment with various formal and informal arrangements to cope with such pressures and guard their independence.
    This article describes six coping strategies that are being explored by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL). These are: i) taking control in determining the project scope and the research questions; ii) making responsibilities explicit and guarding respective roles; iii) installing a broad based societal project advisory group; iv) having some researchers in a project that interact with stakeholders, while keeping others at a distance; v) having a differentiated communications strategy; vi) being fully transparent as to hypotheses and uncertainties regarding data and models.
    Safeguarding independence in research through formal rules and provisions is generally insufficient to protect research from undue stakeholder influence. Also changes in labor routines, relationship management and organizational cultures are needed, not only on the researcher side, but on the stakeholder side as well. This calls for dialogue and joint learning processes.


Dr. Femke Verwest
Dr. F. Verwest is plaatsvervangend sectorhoofd bij het Planbureau voor de Leefomgeving.

Dr. Eva Kunseler
Dr. E.M. Kunseler is wetenschappelijk medewerker bij het Planbureau voor de Leefomgeving.

Dr. Paul Diederen
Dr. P.J.M. Diederen is coördinator bij het Rathenau Instituut.

Dr. Patricia Faasse
Dr. P.E. Faasse is senior onderzoeker bij het Rathenau Instituut.
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
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