Research projects

Among other things, the research projects of the Quality of Governance research group focus on identifying the public values that are important for good public governance (Huberts, De Graaf, Smulders, Van der Wal) and good public-private partnerships (Reynaers). Other projects focus on the way those values relate to one another in decision-making processes (Paanakker, De Graaf). The research group also studies differences in value preferences in historical (Hoenderboom, Wagenaar) and international perspective (Van der Wal, Apapoe, De Bruijn) and the values that are relevant in understanding and explaining the behaviour of other actors (such as interest groups: Braun; and street-level bureaucrats: Maesschalck).

A second line of research projects focuses on the different mechanisms, explanations and consequences of (the lack of) quality of governance in (semi-)public organisations. What can we learn from integrity scandals and other cases of ‘bad’ governance (Berndsen, Huberts, Lasthuizen, Van den Heuvel)? Which factors explain the occurrence of corruption (De Graaf, Khalid, Kolthoff, Schotborgh, Djoeneri) and what drives people to blow the whistle in such cases (De Graaf, Gulmans)? What instruments (policy, supervision, training programs) are important in enhancing the quality and integrity of governance (Van Montfort, Huberts, Braun), how important is leadership and the tone of the top for integrity in organisations (Heres, Lasthuizen) and how do characteristics of governance relate to the achieved results (Fleurke, Hulst, Rodenberg, Lameck)? In this line of research, we attend to legal insights and practices as well (Van Montfort).

In our research projects we also pay attention to the increasingly diffuse context in which contemporary public management operates, e.g. because of sector-blurring between public and private organizations (outsourcing, privatization, hybridization, public-private partnerships, etc.). These developments may have important consequences for the quality of governance. Projects that look specifically into public-private contexts include those on the role of public values in public-private partnerships (Reynaers), governance in semi-public sectors such as housing corporations and hospitals (Koolma, Smulders, De Graaf) and on (ethical) leadership in various organisational contexts (Heres, Lasthuizen).

In addition, we have the ambition to develop the methodical and methodological aspects of governance research in and via our research projects (Peeters, Lasthuizen), also in internationally comparative perspective (Paanakker, Hulst, Apapoe, Lameck, Maesschalck).

More information on the different research projects can be found on the personal pages of the members of the Quality of Governance research group.