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Euroscepticisme in België

Economische belangen, culturele identiteit en politiek wantrouwen

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2008
Keywords Euroscepticism, interests, identity, trust
Authors Koen Abts, Dirk Heerwegh and Marc Swyngedouw
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article tries to analyse and improve the individual-level approaches to the study of public Euroscepticism in Belgium. In recent literature, three approaches focusing on instrumental, cultural and political cues can be distinguished. First, the utilitarian approach associates Euroscepticism with economic interests. Second, the cultural approach draws on cultural attitudes and affective identities. Third, the political approach associates support for European integration with political effi cacy and institutional trust. Drawing upon Belgian data from the IntUne Project 2007, the results show that negative evaluations of the benefits of European membership, social distrust in European fellow citizens and institutional distrust in the EU are the most important determinants of Euroscepticism, while education, national attachment, exclusive identity and political powerlessness have a minor impact.

Koen Abts
Koen Abts (1975) is vrijwillig medewerker aan het Centrum voor Sociologisch Onderzoek van de KULeuven. Hij bereidt een proefschrift voor over de etnopopulistische politiek van het ressentiment. Zijn onderzoeksinteresses liggen op het vlak van ressentiment, etnocentrisme, politiek cynisme, extreemrechts stemgedrag en populisme.

Dirk Heerwegh
Dirk Heerwegh (1977) is deeltijds docent aan het Centrum voor Sociologisch Onderzoek van de KULeuven en postdoctoraal onderzoeker van het FWO Vlaanderen. Zijn onderzoek situeert zich op het domein van survey-methodologie en statistische analysemethoden.

Marc Swyngedouw
Marc Swyngedouw (1956) is gewoon hoogleraar aan het Centrum voor Sociologisch Onderzoek van de KULeuven. Hij is directeur van het Instituut voor Sociaal en Politiek Opinieonderzoek (ISPO). Zijn onderzoeksinteresses omvatten politieke sociologie, verkiezingsonderzoek, extreemrechts stemgedrag, waardenonderzoek en etnische minderheden.

Parlementaire circulatie in de Belgische Kamer van volksvertegenwoordigers, 1831-2008

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2008
Keywords Belgium, parliament, legislative careers, legislative turnover
Authors Frederik Verleden and Christophe Heyneman
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article examines legislative turnover and parliamentary career length in the Belgian Chamber of Representatives since Belgian independence in 1831. Early on a stable representative elite emerged, characterized by a relatively low turnover and an average parliamentary career of nearly ten years. This pattern has changed substantially in the second half of the twentieth century. The average career length in the Chamber is nowadays historically low, due to some extent to the practice of level-hopping. The distribution of career lengths is at the same time highly asymmetrical. The literature on parliamentary careers and turnover suggests three major explanatory variables: regime change, the evolution of political parties and of the institutional framework. In the Belgian case institutional reform and regime change generated merely temporary effects. The same goes for the rise of the organised mass party at the end of the 19th century. The drop in average career length after the Second World War corresponds with a tighter hold of political parties on the selection process of parliamentary candidates.

Frederik Verleden
Frederik Verleden (1980) werkt als assistent aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de KULeuven. Zijn voornaamste onderzoeksthema’s zijn: Belgische parlementaire geschiedenis en fractiewerking.

Christophe Heyneman
Christophe Heyneman (1979) studeerde af als licentiaat Politieke Wetenschappen aan de KULeuven en werkt momenteel als attaché in het Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Parlement.

Tactisch steekspel of tijdverspilling? Strategische meerjarenplanning in Vlaamse gemeenten

Journal Res Publica, Issue 4 2008
Keywords Strategic planning, local government, rationalism, logic incrementalism
Authors Thomas Block, Koenraad De Ceuninck, Herwig Reynaert e.a.
AbstractAuthor's information

    Nowadays, municipalities form strategies and interact with the challenges and opportunities offered by the context in which they operate. From now on, Flemish municipalities are even obliged by the municipal decree to draw up a multiannual strategic plan (albeit in a transitory phase for the current legislature). That plan must formulate a coordinating strategy for the municipality and must contain guidelines for policy. In our contribution we want to examine on the one hand the particular meaning of this strategic plan for local governments. Which contents are given to these plans? How did these plans came about? What is the further course of these plans? What is the possible infl uence of local finances? Etc. On the other hand, we also want to take a broader look: how do we place the strategic plan in the light of the challenge of broader strategy formulation and decision-making which plays a vital role in contemporary local government?
    Starting from a case study in the city of Kortrijk that incorporates both research perspectives, we consecutively conduct an exploring study into this young practice of strategic planning in all Flemish municipalities. Thereby we use in both cases opinion research by interviewing/surveying some key actors (politicians and/or civil servants). They help us to (re-)construct a provisional picture of the contents, the lay out and the future possibilities of strategic plans in contemporary local government.

Thomas Block
Thomas Block (1973) is licentiaat sociologie en wetenschappelijk medewerker aan de vakgroep politieke wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek (CLP) en aan het Centrum voor Duurzame Ontwikkeling (CDO). Hij heeft onderzoekservaring op het vlak van strategische planning in Vlaamse steden, besluitvorming op lokaal niveau en indicatoren voor duurzame stedelijke ontwikkeling. In de voorbije jaren coördineerde hij binnen het CDO het project ‘Stadsmonitor voor leefbare en duurzame Vlaamse steden’. Momenteel werkt hij aan een proefschrift over besluitvorming bij Vlaamse stadsprojecten.

Koenraad De Ceuninck
Koenraad De Ceuninck (1981) is wetenschappelijk medewerker aan de vakgroeppolitieke wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek. Daar bereidt hij een proefschrift voor over de politieke besluitvorming met betrekking tot de gemeentelijke fusies van 1976. Zijn onderzoeksinteresse gaat vooral uit naar lokale politiek en in het bijzonder schaal, besluitvorming en hervormingen op lokaal vlak.

Herwig Reynaert
Herwig Reynaert (1966) is hoogleraar aan de vakgroep politieke wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is tevens voorzitter van het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op de (vergelijkende) lokale politiek. Lokale politieke elites, hervormingen aan het lokaal bestuur, burgerparticipatie, tevredenheidsonderzoek op lokaal vlak... behoren tot zijn interessedomeinen.

Kristof Steyvers
Kristof Steyvers (1979) is docent aan de vakgroep politieke wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek. Zijn onderzoek richt zich op de lokale politiek met in het bijzonder vergelijkende lokale politiek, lokaal politiek leiderschap, hervormingen aan het lokaal bestuur, partijen en verkiezingen op lokaal vlak en stadspolitiek als interessevelden.

Tony Valcke
Tony Valcke (1966) is historicus en assistent aan de vakgroep politieke wetenschappen van de Universiteit Gent. Hij is verbonden aan het Centrum voor Lokale Politiek en de Urban Policy Research Group van de Ghent University Association. Eerder publiceerde hij onder meer over politieke elites, provincieraadsverkiezingen, (de provinciale) politieke instellingen en besluitvorming. Hij bereidt een proefschrift voor over de gouverneurs in België en de commissarissen van de koningin in Nederland.

Waarom beleidsparticipatie door 'gewone' burgers meestal faalt

Een reconstructie van de oorzaken van participatieve verdamping

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2008
Keywords policy participation, participatory evaporation, local politics
Authors Bas van Gool
AbstractAuthor's information

    Over the past decade many Western local governments have been experimenting with initiatives inviting the participation of ordinary citizens in public policy-making. However recurrently popular the idea of such participation, its practice is usually quite disappointing. Few ordinary citizens take an interest in participating in policy-affairs, and official policy-makers, anyhow, often seem to lack the will or means to contemplate or adopt their policy-suggestions. Hence, policy participation by ordinary citizens has a strong tendency to “evaporate”. In this article I address the question why this might be so. Drawing from the literature and qualitative interviews, I suggest five broad causal mechanisms to account for the phenomenon of participatory evaporation. This phenomenon seems, in fact, so overdetermined that it is hard to think of the conditions under which policy participation by ordinary citizens might work at all.

Bas van Gool
Bas van Gool is universitair docent aan de afdeling Bestuur en Organisatie van de Vrije Universiteit van Amsterdam.

De werking van het Parlement van de Duitstalige Gemeenschap (1986-2004) en de invloed van zijn unieke karakter

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2008
Keywords parliament, government, MPs, legislative work, control of government
Authors Ine Vanlangenakker
AbstractAuthor's information

    The smallest parliament in Belgium is the one of the German-speaking community with its 25 members. It is responsible for only 74.000 inhabitants and nine municipalities, but it is nonetheless a fully fledged parliament and government. Due to its limited size and therefore little attention in media and political science, its functioning is quite unknown. This article describes the profile of its politicians and examines the legislative and controlling function of the Parliament, while considering its relationship with the Government. As in other parliaments, we expect a dominant government but due to some distinct characteristics, we expect this to be even truer for the German Community. Therefore, while explaining the results of our research, the emphasis will be put on these characteristics.

Ine Vanlangenakker
Ine Vanlangenakker is als wetenschappelijk medewerkster verbonden aan het Centrum voor Politicologie van de K.U.Leuven.

Burke leeft en woont in Nederland

Over volksvertegenwoordigers en de invloed van de publieke opinie

Journal Res Publica, Issue 3 2008
Keywords public opinion, representative democracy, parliament, Dutch politics
Authors Christel Koop and Joop van Holsteyn
AbstractAuthor's information

    According to many observers, contemporary politicians too often are being swayed by the issues of the day. Elected representatives are supposed to permanently monitor public opinion in general and opinion polls in particular and to act accordingly. An analysis of in-depth interviews with Dutch MPs and a content analysis of an important, long-lasting debate in Dutch Parliament indicates, however, that this popular claim is a misconception. Elected representatives disagree on the content and manifestations of ‘public opinion’ and seldom take it into consideration in their role as representatives. Moreover, public opinion is taken seriously only if it is well-considered and based on substantive knowledge and conclusive arguments.

Christel Koop
Drs. C.M.M. Koop is verbonden aan het Europees Universitair Instituut in Florence.

Joop van Holsteyn
Prof. dr. J.J.M. van Holsteyn is als universitair hoofddocent en bijzonder hoogleraar Kiezersonderzoek verbonden aan het departement Politieke Wetenschap van de Universiteit Leiden.

De Europese Unie in internationale milieuonderhandelingen

Wat verklaart de onderhandelingsautonomie van de EU-onderhandelaar?

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2008
Keywords European Union, Multilateral Environmental Agreements, Negotiation Autonomy, Principal-Agent, Qualitative Comparative Analysis
Authors Tom Delreux
AbstractAuthor's information

    Starting from principal-agent theory, this article analyses the conditions under which an EU negotiator enjoys a particular degree of negotiation autonomy vis-à-vis the member states he represents during multilateral environmental negotiations. A Qualitative Comparative Analysis of eight EU decision-making processes with regard to international negotiations leading to a multilateral environmental agreement indicates that the compellingness of the international negotiations explains the occurrence of negotiation autonomy. However, the international compellingness does not provide explanatory power to understand the particular degree of negotiation autonomy. To understand when an EU negotiator enjoys a high degree of negotiation autonomy, variables such as preference distances, information asymmetries and institutional density need to be taken into account.

Tom Delreux
De auteur is aspirant van het FWO-Vlaanderen, Instituut voor Internationaal en Europees Beleid, K.U.Leuven.

De Europese Commissie en het EU-Raadssecretariaat in het GBVB

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2008
Keywords European Commission, Council Secretariat, Common Foreign and Security Policy, Actorness, Treaty of Lisbon
Authors Hylke Dijkstra
AbstractAuthor's information

    For the European Union to exhibit some ‘actorness’ in the world of international relations requires it to have a certain amount of autonomy from its constituent members. This article analyses, in this respect, the degrees of freedom the Council Secretariat and the European Commission enjoy in the context of the CFSP. While this EU policy is generally known to be intergovernmental, both institutions arguably do have some political influence over the substantive outcomes. This is not the result of formal competencies institutionalized in the Treaties, but rather of an accumulated process and content expertise in these institutions, which can be transformed into political influence via informal means.

Hylke Dijkstra
Hylke Dijkstra is promovendus aan de Faculteit der Cultuur- en Maatschappijwetenschappen van de Universiteit Maastricht.

De Europese Unie: een strategische militaire actor?

Tsjaad als testcase

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2008
Keywords EU, ESDP, Strategic Culture, Military Strategy, EUFOR Tchad/RCA
Authors Sven Biscop and Alexander Mattelaer
AbstractAuthor's information

    The EU is increasingly developing a grand strategy for framing its external policies in a coherent way. The European Security and Defence Policy offers the EU access to military instruments, enabling it to conduct civilian and military operations. This article investigates to what extent the EU can be qualified as a strategic actor, i.e. having a clear vision of how to act in the security domain and the will to do so. Furthermore, we evaluate whether past practices are leading to the framing of a EU strategic culture. As a test case we offer an in-depth analysis of the planning of EUFOR Tchad/RCA – the most recent and largest autonomous military operation the EU has conducted so far. This shows the progress the EU has made in developing its external posture, but also makes clear there exists a conceptual gap in terms of military strategy, where operational planning remains plagued by ad-hoccery.

Sven Biscop
Dr. Sven Biscop is senior research fellow in Egmont – Koninklijk Instituut voor Internationale Betrekkingen in Brussel en gastprofessor voor Europese veiligheid aan het Europacollege in Brugge.

Alexander Mattelaer
Alexander Mattelaer is als onderzoeker verbonden aan het Institute for European Studies van de Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Europa en de wereld: de eeuwige machtsvraag

Journal Res Publica, Issue 2 2008
Keywords European Union, EU External Policies, Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), Principal-Agent, Normative Power Europe
Authors Jan Orbie and Sophie Vanhoonacker
AbstractAuthor's information

    This introductory article situates the three contributions to this special issue on ‘Europe and the world’ within the broader academic discussion on the European Union’s (EU) international role. It expands on the two central questions that run as a red line through this issue: what is the role and power of EU level players in the external policymaking process; what kind of power is Europe in the world? The fi rst part focuses on the explanatory power of rational choice theories and more particularly the principal-agent model when trying to understand the power struggle between the European and national level. The second part addresses the question whether the EU constitutes a sui generis type of international actor, as suggested by the Normative Power Europe hypothesis. With the articles in this special issue as a starting point, it points to the promises and pitfalls of the particular approaches for researching Europe’s international role and makes suggestions for future research.

Jan Orbie
Jan Orbie is docent aan het Centrum voor EU-Studies van de Universiteit Gent.

Sophie Vanhoonacker
Sophie Vanhoonacker is bijzonder hoogleraar ‘Administrative Governance’ aan de Universiteit Maastricht.

    The doctrine of benevolent empire posits that unilateral security governance has become a necessary and legitimate form of global governance. After first assessing if imperial governance can even be considered an instance of global governance, its claim of legitimacy is scrutinised. It is argued, with reference to the political philosophy of Thomas Hobbes, that its strategy of legitimation is eventually doomed to fail because benevolent empire appears to downplay both the importance of education in forging legitimacy and the context-specific nature of legitimacy.

Jacobus Delwaide
Jacobus Delwaide is als politicoloog verbonden aan de KUB/HUB.

Jorg Kustermans
Jorg Kustermans is verbonden aan de vakgroep Europese en Internationale Politiek van de Universiteit Antwerpen.
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