Search result: 54 articles

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Article

An Actor Approach to Mediatization

Linking Politicians’ Media Perceptions, Communication Behaviour and Appearances in the News

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue Online First 2020
Keywords mediatization, politicians, news media, media perceptions, news management
Authors Pauline Ketelaars and Peter Van Aelst
AbstractAuthor's information

    In the light of the broader debate on the mediatization of politics, this study wants to better understand how the media perceptions and media behaviour of politicians are related to their appearances in the news. We opt for an innovative actor-centred approach to actually measure the views and actions of individual politicians. We combine surveys conducted with 142 Belgian representatives with data on politicians’ external communication behaviour and on their appearances in television news, newspapers and news websites. The results show that media behaviour is not so much related to beliefs of media importance. We do find a significant positive relationship between strategic media behaviour and media attention suggesting that politicians who put in more effort appear more often in various news media. However, this positive relationship depends on the specific form of strategic communication and the political position of the legislator. Our study adds to the mediatization literature by showing how and when politicians are successful in obtaining media attention.


Pauline Ketelaars
Pauline Ketelaars, University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Peter Van Aelst
Peter Van Aelst, University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium. Corresponding Author.
Article

Interest Representation in Belgium

Mapping the Size and Diversity of an Interest Group Population in a Multi-layered Neo-corporatist Polity

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue Online First 2020
Keywords interest groups, advocacy, access, advisory councils, media attention
Authors Evelien Willems, Jan Beyers and Frederik Heylen
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article assesses the size and diversity of Belgium’s interest group population by triangulating four data sources. Combining various sources allows us to describe which societal interests get mobilised, which interest organisations become politically active and who gains access to the policy process and obtains news media attention. Unique about the project is the systematic data collection, enabling us to compare interest representation at the national, Flemish and Francophone-Walloon government levels. We find that: (1) the national government level remains an important venue for interest groups, despite the continuous transfer of competences to the subnational and European levels, (2) neo-corporatist mobilisation patterns are a persistent feature of interest representation, despite substantial interest group diversity and (3) interest mobilisation substantially varies across government levels and political-administrative arenas.


Evelien Willems
Evelien Willems, Departement Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Jan Beyers
Jan Beyers, Departement Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Frederik Heylen
Frederik Heylen, Departement Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium.
Article

Still Consociational? Belgian Democracy, 50 Years After ‘The Politics of Accommodation’

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 1 2020
Keywords Belgium, consociational democracy, Lijphart, federalism, ethnolinguistic conflict
Authors Didier Caluwaerts and Min Reuchamps
AbstractAuthor's information

    Despite the enduring importance of Lijphart’s work for understanding democracy in Belgium, the consociational model has come under increasing threat. Owing to deep political crises, decreasing levels of trust in elites, increasing levels of ethnic outbidding and rising demands for democratic reform, it seems as if Lijphart’s model is under siege. Even though the consociational solution proved to be very capable of transforming conflict into cooperation in Belgian politics in the past, the question we raise in this article is whether and to what extent the ‘politics of accommodation’ is still applicable to Belgian democracy. Based on an in-depth analysis of the four institutional (grand coalition, proportionality, mutual veto rights and segmental autonomy) and one cultural (public passivity) criteria, we argue that consociational democracy’s very nature and institutional set-up has largely hollowed out its potential for future conflict management.


Didier Caluwaerts
Didier Caluwaerts is professor of political science at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. His research deals with democratic governance and innovation in deeply divided societies. With Min Reuchamps, he has recently published “The Legitimacy of Citizen-led Deliberative Democracy: The G1000 in Belgium” (Routledge, 2018).

Min Reuchamps
Min Reuchamps is professor of political science at the Université catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain). His teaching and research interests are federalism and multi-level governance, democracy and its different dimensions, relations between language(s) and politics and in particular the role of metaphors, as well as participatory and deliberative methods.
Literature Review

Access_open Preference Voting in the Low Countries

A Research Overview

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 1 2020
Keywords elections, electoral systems, preference voting, candidates, personalization
Authors Bram Wauters, Peter Thijssen and Patrick Van Erkel
AbstractAuthor's information

    Preference votes constitute one of the key features of (open and flexible) PR-list electoral systems. In this article, we give an extensive overview of studies conducted on preference voting in Belgium and the Netherlands. After elaborating on the definition and delineation of preference voting, we scrutinize studies about which voters cast preference votes (demand side) and about which candidates obtain preference votes (supply side). For each of these aspects, both theoretical approaches and empirical results are discussed and compared. At the same time, we also pay attention to methodological issues in these kinds of studies. As such, this research overview reads as an ideal introduction to this topic which has repercussions on many other subfields of political science.


Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is an associate professor at the Department of Political Sciences of Ghent University, where he leads the research group GASPAR. His research interests include political representation, elections and political parties, with special attention to diversity. He has recently published in journals such as International Political Science Review, Party Politics, Political Studies, and Political Research Quarterly. He is co-editor (with Knut Heidar) of ‘Do parties still represent?’ (Routledge, 2019).

Peter Thijssen
Peter Thijssen is a professor at the Department of Political Science of the University of Antwerp, where he is a member the research group M2P (Media, Movements and Politics). His research focuses on political sociology, public opinion and political participation. He has published in such journals as British Journal of Sociology, Electoral Studies, Energy Policy, European Journal of Social Theory, Party Politics and Risk Analysis. He has co-edited ‘New Public Spheres’ (Ashgate, 2013) and ‘Political Engagement of the Young’ (Routledge, 2016).

Patrick Van Erkel
Patrick van Erkel is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Political Science of the University of Antwerp, where he is connected to the research group M2P (Media, Movements and Politics). His research interests include electoral behavior, public opinion, political communication and polarization. He has published in journals such as the European Journal of Political Research, Electoral Studies, European Political Science Review and the Journal of Elections, Public Opinion & Parties.
Article

Split-Ticket Voting in Belgium

An Analysis of the Presence and Determinants of Differentiated Voting in the Municipal and Provincial Elections of 2018

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 3 2019
Keywords split-ticket voting, local elections, voting motives, Belgium, PR-system
Authors Tony Valcke and Tom Verhelst
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article tackles the particular issue of split-ticket voting, which has been largely overlooked in Belgian election studies thus far. We contribute to the literature by answering two particular research questions: (1) to what extent and (2) why do voters cast a different vote in the elections for the provincial council as compared to their vote in the elections for the municipal council?
    The article draws on survey data collected via an exit poll in the ‘Belgian Local Elections Study’, a research project conducted by an inter-university team of scholars.
    Our analysis shows that nearly 45% of the total research population cast a split-ticket vote in the local elections of 2018. However, this number drops to one out of four if we only consider a homogenous party landscape at both levels by excluding the numerous votes for ‘local’ lists (which occur mostly at the municipal level). This finding underlines the importance of accounting for the electoral and institutional context of the different electoral arenas in research on split-ticket voting in PR systems. In the Belgian context, split-ticket voting in 2018 also differed between the different parties and regions. Furthermore, it was encouraged by a higher level of education and familiarity with particular candidates. This candidate-centred and strategic voting was matched by party identification and the urban municipal context favouring straight-ticket voting. Other factors such as region, a rural municipal context and preferential voting seemed more relevant to determine voting for local parties than using the instrument of split-ticket votes as such.


Tony Valcke
Tony Valcke is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences of Ghent University (Belgium). He is a member of the Centre for Local Politics (CLP) and coordinator of the Teacher Training Department. His research, publications and educational activities focus on elections and democratic participation/innovation, (the history of) political institutions and (local) government reform, political elites and leadership, citizenship (education).

Tom Verhelst
Tom Verhelst is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences at Ghent University (Belgium) and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Political Science at Maastricht University (the Netherlands). His research focuses on the Europeanisation of local government (with a particular interest for the regulatory mobilisation of local government in EU decision-making processes) and on the role and position of the local council in Belgium and the Netherlands (with a particular interest for local council scrutiny).
Research Notes

Sub-Constituency Campaigning in PR Systems

Evidence from the 2014 General Elections in Belgium

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 3 2019
Keywords Sub-constituency campaigning, PR system, political advertisements, election campaign, content analysis
Authors Jonas Lefevere, Knut De Swert and Artemis Tsoulou-Malakoudi
AbstractAuthor's information

    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.
Article

Split Offer and Homogeneous Response in Belgium

The Conceptual and Empirical Limitations of (De)Nationalization

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 2 2019
Keywords (de-)nationalization, voting behaviour, party offer, voter response, methodological nationalism
Authors Luana Russo, Kris Deschouwer and Tom Verthé
AbstractAuthor's information

    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

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 2 2019
Keywords fiscal consolidation, fiscal policy, federalism, intergovernmental relations, High Council of Finance
Authors Johanna Schnabel
AbstractAuthor's information

    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 Do Characteristics of Consociational Democracies Still Apply to Belgian Parties?

Journal Politics of the Low Countries, Issue 1 2019
Keywords Belgium, political parties, party membership, political participation, political representation
Authors Emilie Van Haute and Bram Wauters
AbstractAuthor's information

    Belgium has long been described as a typical case of a consociational or consensus democracy. This article aims at identifying whether political parties in Belgium share the internal characteristics of parties in consensus democracies: passive mass memberships, the importance of purposive and material incentives for joining, and representation of a clear subculture in the social and attitudinal profiles of their members and via overlapping memberships with related organizations. We mobilize longitudinal party membership data and party member surveys conducted in three different time periods. We show that pillar parties still exercise their role of mobilization and representation of societal segments, but these segments tend to become smaller over time. New parties offer alternative options of mobilization and representation, although not always in line with the specific institutional arrangements of consociational democracy.


Emilie Van Haute
Emilie Van Haute, Cevipol, Université libre de Bruxelles.

Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters, Research Group GASPAR, Ghent University.
Article

Ze halen hun slag wel thuis

Over particratie en het aanpassingsvermogen van Belgische partijen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2018
Keywords dealignment, electoral support, federalism, gender, particracy, personalisation
Authors Jean-Benoit Pilet and Petra Meier
AbstractAuthor's information

    Particracy has been widely used to describe Belgian politics after World War II. Yet, Belgian politics has changed. We examine five changes – the federalisation of the state architecture, diversification of the demos, erosion of political support, party’s dealignment and personalisation of politics – to evaluate how they have affected particracy in Belgium. The answer is twofold: particracy is still very strong, but it has changed. The three traditional party families that had institutionalised particracy in Belgium (Christian-democrats, socialists and liberals) had to face new challengers. They co-opted the most moderate ones (greens, regionalists), while excluding others (radical right/left). Intraparty democracy/participatory/transparency reforms, or changes to the electoral system, all of them opening the political system, were also implemented, but parties were able to overcome them. Yet, the ever-growing gap between traditional parties and citizens and the growth of new parties building upon voters’ dissatisfaction with traditional parties, may put particracy more radically into question.


Jean-Benoit Pilet
Jean-Benoit Pilet is hoogleraar in de Politieke Wetenschappen aan de Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB). Hij doet onderzoek naar politieke partijen, kiessystemen, kiesgedrag, de personalisering van de politiek en democratische vernieuwing. Over die thema’s publiceerde hij boeken bij Oxford University Press en Routledge en artikels in wetenschappelijke tijdschriften zoals European Journal of Political Reform, West European Politics, Party Politics, Electoral Studies, Environmental Politics, Representation, Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties, Res Publica, Revue Française de Science Politique en Comparative European Politics.

Petra Meier
Petra Meier, hoogleraar Politieke Wetenschappen aan de Universiteit Antwerpen, focust op de representatie van gender, de reproductie van ongelijkheid en de constructie van normativiteit in politiek/beleid. Zij publiceerde recent een aantal special issues over de ontwikkeling van gender beleid (Journal of Women, Politics and Policies; met Emanuela Lombardo en Mieke Verloo), symbolische vertegenwoordiging (Politics, Groups, and Identities; met Tania Verge) en een boek over de professionalisering van de strijd voor gelijkheid (Academia L’Harmattan; met David Paternotte).

Kris Deschouwer
Kris Deschouwer is emeritus professor Politieke Wetenschappen aan de VUB en voorzitter van het European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR). Hij was van 1994 tot 1996 hoofdredacteur van Res Publica.
Article

Als je wint, heb je vrienden

Een verkenning van de pre-electorale aantrekkelijkheid van politieke partijen aan de hand van de verspreiding van verkiezingsmemoranda van belangengroepen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2018
Keywords political parties, interest groups, election memoranda, rational choice, political effectiveness
Authors Tom Schamp and Nicolas Bouteca
AbstractAuthor's information

    In this paper we look at the way in which a wide range of interest groups have tried to influence political parties in Flanders. In order to test both aspects of the historic-institutional perspective and the rational choice perspective on party-group relations, we have analyzed the dissemination of in total 1569 memoranda by 616 interest groups over the six represented Flemish political parties in the 2013-2014 election year. We find that interest groups are very selective in the distribution of their memoranda to the different parties. Traditional parties seem more popular than new parties and political effectiveness seems to be the driver behind the selectivity of the large majority of the interest groups studied in this paper.


Tom Schamp
Tom Schamp is als doctoraatsstudent betrokken bij de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de UGent en lid van de Ghent Association for the Study of Parties and Representation (GASPAR). Hij publiceerde eerder over het effect van kiessystemen op de vertegenwoordiging van politieke partijen en over de relatie tussen politieke partijen en belangengroepen in Vlaanderen.

Nicolas Bouteca
Nicolas Bouteca is professor aan de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de UGent en lid van de Ghent Association for the Study of Parties and Representation (GASPAR). Hij publiceerde eerder over ideologie, politieke partijen, electorale competitie en het Belgische federalisme.
Research Note

N-VA: geboorte of verrijzenis?

Over hoe politieke partijen op verschillende manieren ‘nieuw’ kunnen zijn

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2018
Authors Stefanie Beyens, Kris Deschouwer, Emilie van Haute e.a.
Author's information

Stefanie Beyens
Stefanie Beyens is universitair docent en postdoctoraal onderzoeker aan de Universiteit Utrecht. Daar doet ze onderzoek naar succesvolle publieke organisaties: hoe worden/blijven ze effectief en legitiem, hoe dragen ze bij aan succesvol bestuur? Haar proefschrift, verdedigd in 2016, ging over de overlevingskansen van nieuwe politieke partijen en haar werk over partijen en verkiezingen is gepubliceerd in West European Politics, Party Politics en Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties.

Kris Deschouwer
Kris Deschouwer is onderzoeksprofessor aan de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Hij verricht onderzoek over politieke partijen, verkiezingen, stemgedrag en het democratisch functioneren van verdeelde samenlevingen. Hij coördineert aan de VUB het Strategisch Onderzoeksprogramma EDGE (Evaluating Democratic Governance in Europe).

Emilie van Haute
Emilie van Haute is professor in de politieke wetenschappen aan de Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), waar ze ook adjunct-directeur is van het Centre d’étude de la vie politique (Cevipol). Ze is gespecialiseerd in politieke partijen, politieke participatie, verkiezingen en democratie.

Tom Verthé
Tom Verthé is postdoctoraal assistent aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek aan de Universiteit Gent en gastprofessor aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Zijn onderzoek focust op partijen, verkiezingen en stemgedrag en verscheen onder meer in Party Politics, Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties, Italian Political Science Review en Res Publica.
Article

Het financiële gedrag van politieke partijen

Een verkennend onderzoek op basis van de Belgische case

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2018
Keywords party spending, financial behaviour, spending behaviour, dealignment, professionalisation, Belgium
Authors Jef Smulders and Bart Maddens
AbstractAuthor's information

    In recent decades processes of partisan dealignment and professionalisation have taken place. But how do political parties adapt their financial behaviour to these changes in the political-electoral system? We answer this question by analysing two indicators. First, we examine to what extent parties spend their available financial means (saving versus spending strategy). Secondly, we study how parties spend their available financial means (bureaucratic versus electoral strategy). Based on these two indicators we set up a two-dimensional model describing the financial behaviour of political parties, which we apply to data of Belgian parties in the period 1999-2015. The results illustrate that most parties generally adopt a bureaucratic saving strategy, but that there has not been a linear evolution between 1999 and 2015 towards a specific financial behaviour as a reaction to dealignment and professionalisation.


Jef Smulders
Jef Smulders is aspirant van het Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek - Vlaanderen (FWO), verbonden aan de KU Leuven, Instituut voor de Overheid. Hij verricht voornamelijk onderzoek naar partij- en campagenfinanciering en naar de profielen van verkiezingskandidaten. Zijn doctoraatsproefschrift handelde over de uitgaven van politieke partijen in Europa.

Bart Maddens
Bart Maddens is gewoon hoogleraar in de politieke wetenschappen aan de KU Leuven, Instituut voor de Overheid. Zijn onderzoeksagenda richt zich hoofdzakelijk op partijen campagnefinanciering, politieke carrièrepatronen, de profielen van verkiezingskandidaten en multilevelsystemen.
Article

Domineren Brussel en Den Haag ook de Dorpsstraat?

Nationale en lokale determinanten van het succes van nationale partijen bij de Nederlandse en Vlaamse gemeenteraadsverkiezingen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2017
Keywords second-order elections, municipal elections, local politics
Authors Sofie Hennau, Ramon van der Does and Johan Ackaert
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article investigates to what extent national and/or local factors influence the performance of national parties in the most recent Flemish and Dutch municipal elections of, respectively, 2012 and 2014.
    Our analyses underscore the impact of local factors on the municipal election results, both in Flanders and in the Netherlands. The number of parties and previous election results have a negative effect on the vote share of national political parties. Contrary to the expectations, participation in local government does not have any influence on the national lists’ elections results.
    Although local factors have to be taken into account to get a better estimation of the performance of national lists in municipal elections, national factors have significant effects as well. Parties doing well at the national elections, are less successful at the local level.


Sofie Hennau
Sofie Hennau is postdoctoraal onderzoeker aan de faculteit Rechten van de UHasselt. Zij doet onderzoek naar lokale institutionele hervormingen en lokale politiek.

Ramon van der Does
Ramon van der Does is werkzaam als onderwijs- en onderzoeksassistent aan de Universiteit Leiden. Ook doet hij zelfstandig onderzoek naar deliberatie, politieke participatie en lokale verkiezingen.

Johan Ackaert
Johan Ackaert is hoogleraar en decaan van de faculteit Rechten van de UHasselt. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op lokaal beleid en lokale politiek.
Symposium

Fractionalisatie, volatiliteit en nieuwe partijen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 1 2017
Authors Stefanie Beyens, Simon Otjes and Marc van de Wardt
Author's information

Stefanie Beyens
Stefanie Beyens is als postdoc onderzoeker en universitair docent verbonden aan de Universiteit Utrecht, waar ze succesvolle publieke organisaties onderzoekt. Ze verdedigde in 2016 haar proefschrift over de overlevingskansen van nieuwe politieke partijen en publiceerde over dit onderwerp in Party Politics en West European Politics.

Simon Otjes
Simon Otjes werkt als onderzoeker bij het Documentatiecentrum Nederlandse Politieke Partijen van de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen. Hij promoveerde in 2012 op een proefschrift over het effect van nieuwe partijen op bestaande partijen. Hij doet onderzoek naar politieke partijen en partijsystemen in West-Europa, met een bijzondere focus op Nederland. Hij publiceerde in European Journal of Political Research, American Journal of Political Science en Party Politics.

Marc van de Wardt
Marc van de Wardt is als assistant professor verbonden aan Tilburg University en als postdoc aan de Universiteit Gent. Hij onderzoekt het gedrag van politieke partijen (issuecompetitie, partijtoetreding en uittreding) in vergelijkend perspectief en ook politieke vertegenwoordiging op het niveau van parlementariërs. Zijn onderzoekslijn naar de toetreding en uittreding van politieke partijen in West-Europese partijsystemen wordt gefinancierd door een driejarige onderzoeksbeurs van het Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek Vlaanderen (FWO016/PDO/198). Hij publiceerde recentelijk in tijdschriften als American Journal of Political Science, Electoral Studies, European Union Politics en Journal of Politics.

Thibaut Renson
Thibaut Renson studeerde politieke wetenschappen in Gent, Aix-en-Provence en Londen. Hij is als assistent verbonden aan de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de UGent. Zijn onderzoeksinteresses liggen in burgerschap en politieke participatie. Hij werkt aan een doctoraat aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek, waarin hij het effect van deliberatieve democratie op sociaal leren in kaart brengt. In maart 2017 verschijnt het boek Wie is nog van de partij? Crisis en toekomst van partijleden in Vlaanderen bij Uitgeverij Acco, waarin hij meeschreef aan de hoofdstukken over participatie en democratie.
Article

Europa in Vlaanderen: een verkennende analyse van de impact van Europese integratie op Vlaamse politieke partijen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2016
Keywords Europeanisation, political parties, party organisation, party programmes, Flanders, Belgium
Authors Gilles Pittoors, Wouter Wolfs, Steven Van Hecke e.a.
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article discusses the Europeanisation of Flemish political parties. Based on a dataset spanning the period 1999-2014, the article assesses whether the increase in EU salience at the level of the party (elites) after 2010 resulted in increased Europeanisation, defined as the increased mentioning of the EU in party programmes (i.e. programmatic Europeanisation) and the incorporation of the EU in political party structures (i.e. organisational Europeanisation). Our empirical analysis shows that salience does not adequately explain the level of Europeanisation. Rather, the ideological position of parties seems to provide for a stronger case. The findings therefore call for more in-depth research on intervening variables in order to better explain the varying Europeanisation of (Flemish) political parties.


Gilles Pittoors
Gilles Pittoors is doctoraatsstudent en onderwijsassistent aan GASPAR, Politieke Wetenschappen, Universiteit Gent.

Wouter Wolfs
Wouter Wolfs is aspirant FWO-Vlaanderen, Instituut voor de Overheid, KU Leuven.

Steven Van Hecke
Steven Van Hecke is docent Europese en vergelijkende politiek, Instituut voor de Overheid, KU Leuven.

Peter Bursens
Peter Bursens is gewoon hoogleraar en Jean Monnet professor, ACIM, Universiteit Antwerpen.
Article

Van Volksunie (VU) naar Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (N-VA)

Een analyse van de ideologische opvattingen van hun partijleden

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2016
Keywords regionalist parties, party ideology, elections, party members, Belgium
Authors Bram Wauters and Nicolas Bouteca
AbstractAuthor's information

    The electoral rise of the Belgian regionalist party New-Flemish Alliance (N-VA) from scratch to the country’s largest party is remarkable. We explore here to what extent the party has shifted in ideological terms compared to its less successful predecessor VU. We make use of party member survey data (a dynamic indicator of a party’s position). We distinguish three factors that impact on parties’ positions: institutional reforms, the influx of new members and changes in the internal power distribution. The results show a clear change: on each of the five policy dimensions (centre-periphery, socio-economic, moral-ethical, post-materialist and migration issues), significant differences could be found.


Bram Wauters
Bram Wauters is professor aan het Departement Politieke Wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is hoofd van de Ghent Association for the Study of Parties and Representation (GASPAR).

Nicolas Bouteca
Nicolas Bouteca is professor aan de vakgroep Politieke Wetenschappen van de UGent en lid van de Ghent Association for the Study of Parties and Representation (GASPAR). Hij publiceerde eerder over ideologie, politieke partijen, electorale competitie en het Belgisch federalisme.
Article

Naar een voorwaardelijk model van ongelijkheid in vertegenwoordiging

Een onderzoek naar het moderatie-effect van beleidsdomeinen op ongelijkheid in beleidscongruentie

Journal Res Publica, Issue 1 2016
Keywords Policy congruence, inequality, education, policy domains
Authors Christophe Lesschaeve
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article studies the extent to which differences or inequality in policy congruence between higher and lower educated voters are moderated by policy domains. Instead of measuring inequality across all areas of policy, this study takes a policy domain-specific approach. The analyses are based on a dataset containing voters and party positions on 50 policy statements, gathered in the run-up to the 2009 regional election in Belgium largest region, Flanders. We find, overall, only small and unsubstantial, though significant, differences, in policy congruence between higher and lower educated voters, in favor of the former. However, we find a much larger representational bias towards higher educated when we look at transportation, culture and media, immigration, taxand budgetary policy, and economic policy. At the same time, differences in policy congruence are lower as regards spatial planning. Studying inequality in policy congruence across policy domains thus hides more complex patterns of representational bias.


Christophe Lesschaeve
Christophe Lesschaeve is als doctoraatsstudent verbonden aan de faculteit sociale wetenschappen van de Universiteit Antwerpen. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat uit naar beleidscongruentie en ongelijkheid in vertegenwoordiging.
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