Civic organizations as political Actors: Mapping and predicting the involvement of civic organizations in neighborhood problem-solving and coproduction

Herman Lelieveldt*, Karien Dekker, Beate Völker, René Torenvlied

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Despite the scholarly consensus on the importance of civic organizations for the livability of neighborhoods, there are relatively few empirical studies examining to what extent these organizations engage in various forms of political participation to contribute to the quality of the neighborhood. The authors argue that to get a better overview of neighborhood-oriented forms of participation, it is necessary to look beyond those organizations with an explicit focus on the neighborhood and to include newer forms of participation such as coproduction, government-initiated plans that seek to address neighborhood issues through extensive cooperation with organizations. The authors argue that three groups of factors determine organizational participation: resources, engagement, and network position. An empirical analysis of survey data collected in 2007 from 400 organizations in eight neighborhoods in two Dutch cities shows that the impact of resources is virtually absent, whereas concern about the neighborhood and relations to pivotal organizations are positively related to participation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-24
Number of pages22
JournalUrban affairs review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 19 Aug 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Civil society
  • Coproduction
  • Empirical studies
  • Nonprofit sector
  • Political participation
  • Surveys
  • The Netherlands
  • Urban neighborhoods
  • Voluntary associations
  • n/a OA procedure

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