Regional governance and public accountability in planning for new housing

Nieuws - 23 juli 2018 - Webredactie-OTB

Why are new houses delivered in wrong locations, for wrong target groups and within wrong price-ranges, leaving diverse kinds of housing demand unmet? How can regional governance improve municipal land-use decisions? For what can municipal administrations be demanded to be accountable in the land-use decision process and how? Addressing these questions, Vitnarae Kang and Danielle wrote a paper that provides an analytic framework of three governance approaches (hierarchical, horizontal and market-oriented) and inter-governmental accountability relationships.

This paper is based on a study of regional housing planning in the province of South Holland, the Netherlands. The measures undertaken in the case under review in the context of changing market conditions highlight the need to modify accountability arrangements, when policy-makers choose a new set of governance modes in order to shape relational dynamics conducive to achieving new policy goals.

Planning capacities of municipalities embedded in regional governance remain important

Vitnarae Kang: “Without understanding the role of the higher-level government in local land-use decisions and the role of regional inter-municipal coordination, it is difficult to fully understand what have made Dutch public land development projects internationally a relative success. Despite of recent critics of active land policy in the Netherlands, municipal planning capacities embedded in regional governance remain important. Hierarchical governance approaches are required to support regional coordination that strengthens self-organising power of municipalities in the housing market.”