PhD defence J. (Jannes) Blokstra
- Prof.dr. J. Edelenbos
- Dr. I.F. van Meerkerk
On Friday 20 December 2019, J. Blokstra will defend his PhD dissertation, entitled: ‘Vertrouwen in de lokale overheid. Een methodologische zoektocht naar factoren die het vertrouwen in de gemeente verklaren’.
The central research question was: What determines the level of trust that citizens have in their local government? The research took place in the municipalities of Alblasserdam, Dordrecht, Hendrik-Ido-Ambacht, Papendrecht, Sliedrecht and Zwijndrecht. An important result of the research is the conclusion that personal antecedents play no role in explaining trust in local government. Only two non-personal antecedents explain most of the variance in that trust: responsiveness (listening to what residents want and acting accordingly) and image (the perception of the administrative competence of the municipality, mainly based on reputation). The model of Mayer, Davis and Schoorman (1995) is, in an adapted form, applicable in the context of the local government: integrity and propensity to trust are removed, image replaces competence, and benevolence is about the voice variant, responsiveness. The research confirms the usability of a single trust question – namely, the report mark for trust. When applying SEM, the use of packets of items instead of individual items is to be preferred. The formative nature of trust makes it problematic to apply SEM as an analysis technique in trust research. This research provides practical starting points for municipalities that want to increase the trust of their residents. If, as shown by this research, responsiveness and image are so important when it comes to trust in the municipality, actions to improve trust must tie in with those two antecedents.
The public defence will take place at the Senatehall, 1st floor of the Erasmus Building, Campus Woudestein. The ceremony will begin exactly at 13.30 hrs. In light of the solemn nature of the ceremony, we recommend that you do not take children under the age of 6 to the first part of the ceremony.