Citizens Initiatives : How Local Governments Fill their Facilitative Role

Judith Bakker, Sebastianus A.H. Denters, Mirjan Oude Vrielink, Pieter J. Klok

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54 Citations (Scopus)
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In the context of drastic cutbacks many Dutch municipalities consider citizens’ initiatives (CIs) as an attractive alternative for municipal policies aimed at improving the livability and safety in neighbourhoods, simultaneously building responsible citizenship. In this paper we combine different theoretical perspectives to analyse the institutional settings in which CIs are being realised, and how municipalities try to facilitate such initiatives. Municipalities can do this by either trying to structure the relevant networks or by various forms of process management. This analysis sheds light on how municipalities use a variety of instruments to mobilise citizens to participate in CIs. In using such instruments they can influence various factors (like motivations, personal resources, social capital and expected responsiveness; cf. Lowndes et al.’s CLEAR model) that increase the likelihood of civic engagement
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395-415
JournalLocal government studies
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • IR-81701
  • METIS-288338


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