Why are some Flemish municipal party group leaders more familiar with NPM principles than others? Assessing the influence of individual factors.

  • Benedicte Buylen Ghent University
  • Johan Christiaens
Keywords: local government reform, New Public Management, party group leaders


This study addresses the controversy in the literature regarding the effects of individual factors on party group leaders’ familiarity with a selection of New Public Management concepts. In doing so, it contributes to the scarce literature regarding this group of non-executive politicians. Furthermore, this study has an innovative methodological approach, introducing an NPM “familiarity coefficient” in order to make a quantitative assessment. Data was gathered from a survey of 363 party group leaders in Flemish municipalities and the results reveal moderate familiarity. Factors that had a positive effect on the NPM familiarity coefficient were being a majority leader, dual mandate holding and financial as well as political expertise.

Author Biography

Benedicte Buylen, Ghent University
Research & teaching assistant Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Department of Accountancy and Corporate Finance