Energy Governance in the Netherlands
2019, Musch, Elisabeth
The Dutch energy transition governance is marked by distinct approaches of policy coordination, expert involvement and strategic planning, consensus building, and mutual self-commitments. These patterns of negotiation democracy with their roots in the period of pillarization (1890 until 1960s) have already been successfully applied by the Dutch government in the past. In the 1980s and 1990s, the government negotiated a consensus on socioeconomic policy reforms with the social partners, the so-called polder model. State actors also referred to this governance approach in the fields of immigrant integration and religious governance. In the field of energy, led by the Social and Economic Council (SER) in 2013, the Dutch government negotiated a comprehensive energy accord with employers’ federations, trade unions, energy suppliers, environmental and conservationist organizations, and other interest groups. However, path dependence went along with institutional adaptations. These changes are manifest in the inclusion of lower administrations, new forms of citizen participation, and improved monitoring and evaluation systems.