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Local Political Elites and Democracy: the Case of the Belgian Local Councillors

Tom Verhelst (UGent) , Herwig Reynaert (UGent) and Kristof Steyvers (UGent)
(2009)
Author
Organization
Abstract
Local government is claimed to be in a state of transition. The classic representative local democracy is being complemented with participatory democracy, market and network democracy, and these changes are accompanied by an evolution in the local elite, labeled as the professionalization of the councilor. This paper outlines the vision of the local political elite upon contemporary local democracy, and explores the relation with the professionalization of the councilor. Data were collected on the base of a questionnaire sent to a representative sample of Belgian local councilors. The results indicate that councilors still prefer their classic role as representative councilors, and confirm the strong influence of political parties in the Belgian political system. Furthermore, professionalized councilors tend to have more reservations towards participatory, network and market democracy.
Keywords
local democracy, local councillors, professionalization

Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

Chicago
Verhelst, Tom, Herwig Reynaert, and Kristof Steyvers. 2009. “Local Political Elites and Democracy: The Case of the Belgian Local Councillors.” In .
APA
Verhelst, T., Reynaert, H., & Steyvers, K. (2009). Local Political Elites and Democracy: the Case of the Belgian Local Councillors. Presented at the 59th Political Studies Association Annual Conference, Challenges for Democracy in a Global Era.
Vancouver
1.
Verhelst T, Reynaert H, Steyvers K. Local Political Elites and Democracy: the Case of the Belgian Local Councillors. 2009.
MLA
Verhelst, Tom, Herwig Reynaert, and Kristof Steyvers. “Local Political Elites and Democracy: The Case of the Belgian Local Councillors.” 2009. Print.
@inproceedings{797731,
  abstract     = {Local government is claimed to be in a state of transition. The classic representative local democracy is being complemented with participatory democracy, market and network democracy, and these changes are accompanied by an evolution in the local elite, labeled as the professionalization of the councilor. This paper outlines the vision of the local political elite upon contemporary local democracy, and explores the relation with the professionalization of the councilor. Data were collected on the base of a questionnaire sent to a representative sample of Belgian local councilors. The results indicate that councilors still prefer their classic role as representative councilors, and confirm the strong influence of political parties in the Belgian political system. Furthermore, professionalized councilors tend to have more reservations towards participatory, network and market democracy.},
  author       = {Verhelst, Tom and Reynaert, Herwig and Steyvers, Kristof},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {The University of Manchester, Renold building},
  pages        = {24},
  title        = {Local Political Elites and Democracy: the Case of the Belgian Local Councillors},
  url          = {http://www.psa.ac.uk/2009/pps/Verhelst.pdf},
  year         = {2009},
}