Zoekresultaat: 28 artikelen

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Jaar 2019 x

    Modern technology will lead to fundamentally different models for policy and governance. The impact of this on existing government bureaucracy is strongly underexposed within the current discourse on digital transformation. This essay, based on practical experience, wants to make clear (a) that this impact is indeed there; (b) that this impact affects all processes of the government organization; and (c) that this impact is not something that will emerge in the long term, instead it is already evident. So it is now time for administrators, policymakers and managers to put this topic on the agenda, otherwise the disruptive soup will soon not be as hot, but even hotter, when eaten.


Drs. Evert-Jan Mulder
Drs. E. Mulder is oprichter en directeur van Red Plume, adviesbureau voor Digitale Transformatie van de Publieke Sector. Hij onderzoekt de impact van de digitale revolutie op arbeid en organisatie van gemeenten, is nauw betrokken bij de ontwikkeling van smart cities, adviseert overheden over strategie voor digitale transformatie, geeft binnen de Nederlandse en EU-overheid workshops en masterclasses over dit onderwerp, en wordt ook internationaal als expert gevraagd.
Artikel

Over zelfredzame burgers gesproken

Hoe ambtenaren een buigzaam burgerschapsideaal vormgeven

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 4 2019
Trefwoorden Interactional framing, Self reliance, Silent ideologies, Micro frames, Self referentiality
Auteurs Drs. Harrie van Rooij, Dr. Margit van Wessel en Prof. dr. Noelle Aarts
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The concept of self-reliant citizens reflects an ideology of citizenship that is multiple and flexible. It could be regarded as a ‘plastic’ word, malleable and adjustable according to convictions, needs and purposes. This study shows the importance of considering the way in which ideological views on citizenship are transferred, adjusted and enacted in an organizational context. On the basis of a case study at the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration (DTCA), we contribute to knowledge on the way processes of framing interrelate on micro, meso and macro levels. We found that frames on self-reliance are enacted in a way that tensions and dilemmas are neutralized or reduced. In a dynamic context of conflicting goals and limited resources, DTCA-employees create meanings of self-reliance which legitimate practices and policies. By doing this they reproduce both organizational and social perspectives. Accounts of citizenship play an important role in this process. Self-reliant citizens are presented as active and responsible. The need of help is imagined as a normal and yet an atypical situation. This study promotes attention to the possibility that organizational systems reproduce perspectives in a way that alternative views remain unnoticed, whereas organizational choices are silently accepted as natural facts.


Drs. Harrie van Rooij
Drs. Harrie van Rooij is PhD-kandidaat (buitenpromovendus) bij het Institute for Science in Society (ISiS), Radboud University, en coördinerend adviseur corporate communicatie bij het ministerie van Financiën.

Dr. Margit van Wessel
Dr. Margit van Wessel is universitair docent, leerstoel Strategische Communicatie aan de Wageningen University & Research.

Prof. dr. Noelle Aarts
Prof. dr. Aarts is professor Socio-Ecological Interactions aan het Institute for Science in Society (ISiS), Radboud University.
Research Notes

Paid Digital Campaigning During the 2018 Local Elections in Flanders

Which Candidates Jumped on the Bandwagon?

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden local elections, candidates, campaign spending, digital campaigning
Auteurs Gunther Vanden Eynde, Gert-Jan Put, Bart Maddens e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This research note investigates the role of paid digital campaigning in the 2018 local elections in Flanders. We make use of the official declarations which candidates are legally required to submit. In these declarations, candidates indicate whether and how much they invested in online campaigning tools during the four months preceding the elections. We collected data on a sample of 3,588 individual candidates running in the 30 municipalities of the Leuven Arrondissement. A multilevel logistic regression model shows that the odds of spending on digital campaigning increases among incumbent aldermen and local councillors. The latter finding supports the normalization thesis of digital campaigning. The results also show that scale is important – the more potential voters a candidate has, the higher the odds that the candidate invests in digital tools.


Gunther Vanden Eynde
Gunther Vanden Eynde is a doctoral researcher at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute. His research interests include political finance, campaign spending and the social media campaigns of Belgian political parties and their candidates.

Gert-Jan Put
Gert-Jan Put is a Senior Researcher at the Research Center for Regional Economics, KU Leuven. His research focuses on candidate selection and intra-party competition, and has been published in Political Behavior, Party Politics and Electoral Studies.

Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is a professor of political science at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute His research interests include political finance, elections and multi-level systems. His work has been published in West European Politics, Party Politics and Electoral Studies.

Gertjan Muyters
Gertjan Muyters is a doctoral researcher at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute. His research focuses on candidate turnover and political careers.
Article

How to Improve Local Turnout

The Effect of Municipal Efforts to Improve Turnout in Dutch Local Elections

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden turnout, local elections, get out the vote, campaign, the Netherlands
Auteurs Julien van Ostaaijen, Sabine van Zuydam en Martijn Epskamp
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Even though many municipalities use a variety of means to improve turnout in local elections, citizen participation in local elections is a point of concern in many Western countries, including the Netherlands. Our research question is therefore: How effective are municipal efforts to improve turnout in (Dutch) local elections? To this end, we collected data from three sources: (1) a survey sent to the municipal clerks of 389 Dutch municipalities to learn what they do to improve turnout; (2) data from Statistics Netherlands on municipalities’ socio-demographic characteristics; and (3) data on the turnout in local elections from the Dutch Electoral Council database. Using hierarchical multiple regression analysis, we found that the direct impact of local governments’ efforts to improve turnout is low. Nevertheless, some measures seem to be able to make a difference. The relative number of polling stations was especially found to impact turnout.


Julien van Ostaaijen
Julien van Ostaaijen is assistant professor of public administration at the Tilburg Institute of Governance (Tilburg University).

Sabine van Zuydam
Sabine van Zuydam is assistant professor of public administration at the Tilburg Institute of Governance (Tilburg University) and researcher at Necker van Naem.

Martijn Epskamp
Martijn Epskamp is a researcher of the municipality of Rotterdam (Research and Business Intelligence department)
Research Notes

Sub-Constituency Campaigning in PR Systems

Evidence from the 2014 General Elections in Belgium

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Sub-constituency campaigning, PR system, political advertisements, election campaign, content analysis
Auteurs Jonas Lefevere, Knut De Swert en Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Sub-constituency campaigning occurs when parties focus their campaign resources on specific geographical areas within an electoral district. This behaviour was traditionally thought to occur only in single-member plurality elections, but recent research demonstrates that proportional systems with multi-member districts can also elicit sub-constituency campaigning. However, most studies of sub-constituency campaigning rely on self-reported measures of campaigning, not direct measures of campaign intensity in different regions and communities. We present novel data on geographical variations in the intensity of Flemish parties’ campaign advertising during the 2014 general elections in Belgium, which provides a direct measure of sub-constituency campaigning. Our findings show clear evidence of sub-constituency campaigning: parties campaign more intensely in municipalities where they have stronger electoral support and in municipalities with greater population density.


Jonas Lefevere
Jonas Lefevere is assistant professor at Vesalius College and the Institute for European Studies (VUB). His research interests include the strategic communication of political elites, the effects of campaign communication on political attitudes and electoral choice and the role of issue perceptions in electoral behavior.

Knut De Swert
Knut De Swert is Assistant Professor, Political Communication and Journalism, at the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands). His research is situated in the field of media and politics, and mainly focuses on the quality of (political) journalism and foreign news in a comparative perspective.

Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi is a student research assistant for the EOS research project RepResent which focuses on representation and democratic resentment. She is currently following a Research Master’s at the University of Amsterdam with an interest in political communication research.
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

Positieve beleidsevaluatie: hoe evaluatieonderzoek kan bijdragen aan beter beleid

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden positive public administration, positive evaluation, positive psychology, success, policy oriented learning
Auteurs Dr. Peter van der Knaap en Dr. Rudi Turksema
Samenvatting

    New insights from the field of positive psychology led to the insight that people learn more effectively from positive feedback. Policy evaluation aims to improve public policy programmes through contributing to both accountability and learning. This ambiguous ambition has contributed to a considerable body of research into the impact of policy evaluation. Too often the conclusion is that the outcomes of policy evaluations – which are often negative by nature – are sparsely used by policy makers. This has led to series of improvements in the way we carry out evaluations. First through technical improvements and then by more responsive approaches. Both have not led to the desired breakthrough. Building on a number of positive evaluation studies, we advance a more positive approach in policy evaluation. Focussing on the successes in policy programmes rather than on its failures may contribute to evaluation impact. Consequently, we think a more positive, appreciative approach and using data to find success in policy making is necessary for policy evaluators to be more effective. This article presents practical examples of positive policy evaluations and successful use of data in the domain of policy evaluation.


Dr. Peter van der Knaap

Dr. Rudi Turksema
Vrij artikel

Burgerparticipatie: ontwikkelingstypen van bewonersverbanden

Interactie tussen participatieprofessionals en bewonersverbanden in beeld

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

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


Dr. ir. Anna de Zeeuw

Eelco van Wijk MSc

Dr. Alex Straathof
Thema-artikel

Wanneer worden gemeenten gezien als waardevol?

Lokale publieke waardecreatie door de ogen van lokale actoren

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden public value management, Positive Public Administration, local government, performance assessment
Auteurs Scott Douglas DPhil en Prof. dr. Paul ’t Hart
Samenvatting

    This article explores how we can gain insight into the quality of local government with the help of the public value perspective. The public value perspective does not evaluate government through generalised standards or benchmarks, but through the judgments of the actors involved in the policy. This approach could do better justice to the unique context of different governments, such as different local governments. The public value perspective, however, is hampered by the competing expectations that actors have of public policy and their generally negative bias towards the government. Based on 71 interviews with local actors in six municipalities, we show how the public value approach does indeed yields many different and critical perspectives, even within municipalities that are considered successful by national experts. However, we also show which connections exist between these seemingly competing perspectives and how sombre judgments about past governance are actually influenced by optimistic ambitions for the future.


Scott Douglas DPhil

Prof. dr. Paul ’t Hart
Essay

De vroege geschiedenis van de (lokale) bestuurswetenschappen

Joris in ’t Veld en de nieuwe vormen van decentralisatie

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 3 2019
Auteurs Dr. Rik Reussing
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This essay is about the Dutch PhD-thesis New forms of decentralization by Joris in ’t Veld from 1929. He was not only a competent and efficient social-democratic administrator, but he was also an early administrative scientist. Like the other early (local) administrative scientists, he mainly worked from the legal discipline. During this period however, we also see an increasing input from other disciplines, such as urban planning, economic geography, business administration and statistics. The subject of his dissertation does not come out of the blue. Like many, In ’t Veld felt strongly attracted to the problems of urban and regional development, but the various problems were not yet ripe for a final solution. An important part of his book is therefore devoted to the various solutions that have been found abroad for similar problems. In his thesis, In ’t Veld discusses various forms of governance. First of all, he looks at the way in which the arrangement of cooperation between municipalities can be improved. Where this (voluntary and forced) cooperation falls short of its nature, the institutes of the port authority and of the regional plan come into the picture. In both cases it concerns decentralization through target corporations. A solution is also conceivable through further territorial decentralization: the insertion of a new regional corporation between the province and the municipality in the form of the region (the urban region or the rural region). The urban region needs a necessary supplement in the form of a system of tax equalization to adequately do justice to the interests of the whole and of the parts. An alternative to the urban region is the unity municipality with local decentralization. His integral vision on the organization of domestic government in 1929 is also instructive for the present time.


Dr. Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.

    Overheidsbeleid heeft steeds meer te maken met digitalisering en data-ificering van de samenleving en het menselijk gedrag. Dat betekent uitdagingen voor beleidsevaluatoren. In dit artikel gaat het om éen van de daarmee gepaard gaande verschijnselen: Big Data en Artificiële Intelligentie (BD/AI). Het artikel stelt, na erop gewezen te hebben dat de evaluatieprofessie langere tijd niet erg actief op digitaal gebied is geweest, ten eerste de vraag wat BD/AI te bieden hebben aan evaluatieonderzoek van (digitaal) beleid. Vijf toepassingsmogelijkheden worden besproken die de kwaliteit, bruikbaarheid en relevantie van evaluatieonderzoek kunnen bevorderen. De tweede vraag is wat evaluatieonderzoek te bieden heeft, als het gaat om het analyseren/onderzoeken van de betrouwbaarheid, validiteit en enkele andere aspecten van Big Data en AI. Ook daar worden verschillende mogelijkheden (en moeilijkheden) geschetst. Naar het oordeel van de schrijver is het enerzijds dienstig (meer) gebruik te maken van BD/AI in evaluatieonderzoek, maar doen onderzoekers er ook goed aan (meer) aandacht uit te laten gaan naar: de assumpties die aan BD/AI ten grondslag liggen (inclusief het ‘black box’-probleem); de validiteit, veiligheid en geloofwaardigheid van algoritmes; de bedoelde en onbedoelde consequenties van het gebruik ervan; én de vraag of de claims dat digitale interventies die mede gebaseerd zijn op BD/AI effectief (of effectiever zijn dan andere), onderbouwd en valide zijn.


Frans L. Leeuw
Frans L. Leeuw (socioloog) is hoogleraar Recht, Openbaar Bestuur en Sociaalwetenschappelijk onderzoek aan Maastricht University. Eerder was hij o.a. directeur WODC, Hoofdinspecteur Hoger Onderwijs Onderwijsinspectie, hoogleraar evaluatieonderzoek Universiteit Utrecht, directeur doelmatigheidsonderzoek Algemene Rekenkamer en decaan Humanities Open Universiteit. Hij bereidt een boekje voor over 125 jaar empirisch-juridisch onderzoek, inclusief de nieuwste loot: digitaal empirisch-juridisch onderzoek. Eerdere publicaties handelden over diverse onderwerpen met als rode draden evaluatieonderzoek, theorieën, gedragsmechanismen, benutting van onderzoek en juridische thema’s.
Artikel

Access_open Sociaal werk in stadswijken waar problemen zich opstapelen

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden Residualisering, Stedelijk sociaal werk, Concentratie van sociale problematiek, Link work, Geuzenveld
Auteurs Dr. Saskia Welschen en Dr. Lex Veldboer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The impact of residualisation on social work has so far hardly been explored. Based on existing literature and recently started empirical research in Amsterdam we analyze several consequences. Residualisation refers to the process whereby urban social housing is strictly allocated to the lowest income groups. What does this concentration of disadvantaged households mean for the role of social workers? Firstly, for community workers residualisation mostly implies a renewed role as instigators of residents’ participation in urban renewal trajectories for social mix. Furthermore community activities are increasingly used to offer safe havens for new and old groups of residents and also to prevent expensive treatments for several residential groups. For social workers focusing on individual support or casework residualisation results in an increasingly complex caseload. Residualisation does not imply extra formation for social work, but rather extra attention for the effortful coproduction of welfare between formal and informal actors. Within this playing field, we distinguish link work as vital for both formal and informal social work. Link work is about establishing vertical and horizontal connections between different worlds, across sectoral, professional or trust gaps. We expect that in areas of residualisation successful urban social work is dependent on strong linking skills.


Dr. Saskia Welschen
Dr. Saskia Welschen is senior onderzoeker aan de Hogeschool van Amsterdam en zelfstandig onderzoeker.

Dr. Lex Veldboer
Dr. Lex Veldboer is lector aan de Hogeschool van Amsterdam.
Article

Split Offer and Homogeneous Response in Belgium

The Conceptual and Empirical Limitations of (De)Nationalization

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden (de-)nationalization, voting behaviour, party offer, voter response, methodological nationalism
Auteurs Luana Russo, Kris Deschouwer en Tom Verthé
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    By examining the Belgian case, this article aims to show that methodological nationalism is strongly present in the literature on nationalization of party offer and voting behaviour. In nationalization studies, Belgium is often presented as a typical example of a denationalized country. This is true for the party offer, as it is de facto split between the two language groups since the 1980s, and therefore also voter response at the national level. However, voter response within each separate subnational party system is very homogeneous and shows interesting differences between these party systems that inform us about important electoral dynamics. We argue, on the basis of our results, that rather than stretching the concept of nationalization, it is preferable and justified to treat the concepts of nationalization of the party offer and homogenization of voter response as analytically distinct and not as two sides of the same coin.


Luana Russo
Luana Russo, Maastricht University.

Kris Deschouwer
Kris Deschouwer, Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Tom Verthé
Tom Verthé, Ghent University & Vrije Universiteit Brussel.
Article

Fiscal Consolidation in Federal Belgium

Collective Action Problem and Solutions

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden fiscal consolidation, fiscal policy, federalism, intergovernmental relations, High Council of Finance
Auteurs Johanna Schnabel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Fiscal consolidation confronts federal states with a collective action problem, especially in federations with a tightly coupled fiscal regime such as Belgium. However, the Belgian federation has successfully solved this collective action problem even though it lacks the political institutions that the literature on dynamic federalism has identified as the main mechanisms through which federal states achieve cooperation across levels of government. This article argues that the regionalization of the party system, on the one hand, and the rationalization of the deficit problem by the High Council of Finance, on the other, are crucial to understand how Belgium was able to solve the collective action problem despite its tightly coupled fiscal regime and particularly high levels of deficits and debts. The article thus emphasizes the importance of compromise and consensus in reducing deficits and debts in federal states.


Johanna Schnabel
School of Politics and International Relations, University of Kent, Rutherford College, Canterbury CT2 7NX, United Kingdom.
Article

Access_open What Is Left of the Radical Right?

The Economic Agenda of the Dutch Freedom Party 2006-2017

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden radical right-wing populist parties, economic policies, welfare chauvinism, populism, deserving poor
Auteurs Simon Otjes
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article examines the economic agenda of the Dutch Freedom Party. It finds that this party mixes left-wing and right-wing policy positions. This inconsistency can be understood through the group-based account of Ennser-Jedenastik (2016), which proposes that the welfare state agenda of radical right-wing populist parties can be understood in terms of populism, nativism and authoritarianism. Each of these elements is linked to a particular economic policy: economic nativism, which sees the economic interest of natives and foreigners as opposed; economic populism, which seeks to limit economic privileges for the elite; and economic authoritarianism, which sees the interests of deserving and undeserving poor as opposed. By using these different oppositions, radical right-wing populist parties can reconcile left-wing and right-wing positions.


Simon Otjes
Assistant professor of political science at Leiden University and researcher at the Documentation Centre Dutch Political Parties of Groningen University.
PhD Review

‘The Internal Legitimacy of European Interest Groups. Analyses of National Intrest Groups Perspectives’

PhD by Samuel Defacqz (Université catholique de Louvain), supervisors: Virginie Van Ingelgom, Benoît Rihoux & Theodoros Koutroubas.

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2019
Auteurs Stéphanie Yates Ph.D.
Auteursinformatie

Stéphanie Yates Ph.D.
Ph.D., Université du Québec à Montréal.
Thema-artikel ‘Uitgesproken Bestuurskunde’

Hoe onzeker is de toekomst, of hoe is de toekomst onzeker?

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden future, uncertainty, strategy, governance, organization
Auteurs Prof. dr. Martijn van der Steen
Samenvatting

    The future is inherently uncertain. No certain statements can be made about the future. This means that policy and management always have to deal with long-term ‘future uncertainty’. However, it does matter how we name uncertainty; what words we use for it. What kind of uncertainty do we mean when we talk about uncertainty in policy processes and management? The same applies to the type of preparation for uncertainty that we choose. The question ‘are we prepared’ can also be answered in different ways. In this contribution we identify a variety of types of uncertainty and types of ways of dealing with uncertainty, based on the text of my Inaugural Speech delivered in 2016. I then discuss how these questions have been translated into research and education and which next steps I foresee for myself in the – although inherently uncertain – near future.


Prof. dr. Martijn van der Steen
Thema-artikel ‘Uitgesproken Bestuurskunde’

Van wie is de verzorgingsstaat?

Bestuurskunde als zelfbestuurskunde

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden institutional analysis, common-pool resources, welfare state, self-governance
Auteurs Prof. dr. Menno Fenger
Samenvatting

    The work of Elinor Ostrom suggests that under certain conditions local communities are better able to sustainably manage so-called common pool resources than an external party such as government. In this article I explore whether and to what extent those conditions also apply to the governance of the Dutch welfare state. I show that in the current participation society there are numerous examples in which self-governance seems to be successful and in which Ostrom’s conditions seem to play an important role. On that basis, I come to the conclusion that citizens – under certain institutional conditions – may be better able to resolve social problems among themselves than through external interventions. This requires a shift from public administration to self-administration.


Prof. dr. Menno Fenger
Thema-artikel ‘Uitgesproken Bestuurskunde’

Pleidooi voor een ontwerpgerichte bestuurskunde

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden Design, Solution-oriented research, Abduction, Societal relevance
Auteurs Prof. dr. Arwin van Buuren
Samenvatting

    Public Administration as a scientific discipline can increase its scientific and social relevance if it takes a more design-oriented approach. With that I go back to the classical notion of Herbert Simon that public administration is a design science. I advocate revitalizing that idea. This is necessary if we look at the problems governments are struggling with, but also in view of the developments in the environment of our field. But it is also promising because it offers opportunities to achieve innovative, scientific knowledge. The design sciences contain numerous insights into how a public administration design process can be set up, with room for creativity, abduction and intuition. I divide a public design process into five rounds: the round of understanding the issue, defining or demarcating it, coming up with possible solutions, testing and refining these solutions and distilling the more generically applicable elements. This is ideally done through fast, iterative rounds of developing, testing and refining designs. In such a design process, disciplinary knowledge can play an important role in understanding the issue and coming up with possible designs. And so designing can also become a way to validate this knowledge.


Prof. dr. Arwin van Buuren
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