The SPG Team

Paul 't Hart

SPG Program Leader

Paul 't Hart is the programme leader for the Successful Public Governance initiative. He was awarded an ERC Advanced Grant in 2016 to set and direct the program. He is professor of public administration at Utrecht University's Department of Public Administration and Organization Sciences, an associate dean of the Netherlands School of Public Administration, and a core faculty member of the Australia New Zealand School of Government. He is an elected member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, chairs the Netherlands Society for Public Administration (2012-2017), was co-editor (2011-2015) of Political Psychology and an editorial board member of a range of other academic journals, and is currently a member of a Dutch government committee evaluating the 20102 Police Law which instigated the biggest public sector reform in the history of the country. 


Paul's interest in evaluating public policy and government performance is long-standing. In the 1990's and early 2000s he co-wrote and co-edited several books about policy fiascos and - later on governance success and failure, and he contributed extensively to closely associated bodies of knowledge about groupthink, crisis management and bureaucratic politics. During the last 15 years, his main research focus was on public leadership, including the question how leaders and leadership styles can be assessed, and how they drive or impair the achievement of successful public governance. 


His recent publications include: The Routledge Companion to Leadership, Routledge 2017, co-edited with John Storey, Jean Hartley, Jean-Louis Denis, and David Ulrich; The Politics of Crisis Management: Public Leadership Under Pressure,  Cambridge University Press 2017, co-authored with Arjen Boin, Eric Stern and Bengt Sundelius; The Leadership Capital Index: A New Perspective on Political Leadership, Oxford University Press 2017, co-edited with Mark Bennister  and Benjamin Worthy; and Pivot of Power: Australian Prime Ministers and Political Leadership, 1949-2016, Melbourne University Press 2017, co-authored with Paul Strangio and James Walter. 


With the SPG project, which runs from late 2016 until late 2021, Paul returns to his roots, but now with a firm commitment to looking squarely at success in public governance: how we assess it, why we rarely talk about it and investigate it systematically, and what we learn about the art and craft of governing if we actually do so. 


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Judith van Erp

SPG Member

Judith van Erp is Professor of Public Institutions at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. Her research addresses corporate compliance and corporate crime. She has published on various public and private modes of regulation and governance of corporate behavior and their intersection, and in particular, on the role of the media and ‘naming and shaming’ in governing corporate crime. Together with Gudrun Vande Walle and Wim Huisman, she founded and co-chairs the European Working Group on Organizational Crime, a subdivision of the European Society of Criminology. She also co-chairs the Collaborative Research Network on Regulatory Governance of the Law and Society Association.

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Scott Douglas

SPG Member

Scott Douglas, DPhil (1983) is assistant professor of public management at the Utrecht School of Governance. Before coming to Utrecht, he completed his PhD at Oxford University with Christopher Hood and worked as a strategy consultant with The Boston Consulting Group. Scott's research focuses on the changing definition of governance success, with a particular focus on the use of performance management in collaborative networks. He was co-editor of a Special Issue on Public Value Management in Public Management Review and has published in The International Journal of Public Administration and Commonwealth and Comparative Politics.

Contributions to Team:
-7th Oct 2016. Scott Douglas hosts two workshops for top civil servants on ‘Searching for Government Success’ in Latvia. He specifically explores the different dimensions of government success and the need to build a multi-dimensional and interactive performance management system. [In English]

-29th Nov 2016. Scott Douglas and Lieske van der Torre facilitate a Public Value Assessment session of the prostitution zone in Utrecht, bringing together local politicians, civil servants, police officers, and sex workers to discuss the success of the current policies. [No powerpoint]

-2nd Dec 2016. Scott Douglas leads an interactive session at the Dutch National Police with the members of the ‘Next Generation’ who are helping to define the new strategy of the organization. With the group, they explored different notions of government success in the last century. [In Dutch]

-16th January 2017. Stefanie Beyens and Scott Douglas lead a workshop with change managers from the different ministries in The Hague, exploring what ‘successful organizational change’ looks like at the national level of government. [In Dutch]


-Please see here

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Lieske van der Torre

SPG Member

Lieske van der Torre is assistant professor at the Utrecht School of Governance. Currently her main research project focuses on successful local governance. This research has a close connection to the practice of Dutch municipalities and is financed by the Association of Netherlands Municipalities

In November 2016 Lieske defended her dissertation on the strategies and results of sheltered work companies. She published also various articles in national and international journals.  

Lieske teaches several courses in the bachelor and master-programs of Utrecht School of Governance. Besides she also teaches at the Netherlands School of Amsterdam and for practitioners. 

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Stefanie Beyens

SPG Member

Stefanie Beyens is a postdoctoral researcher and assistant professor at the Utrecht School of Governance. Within the ERC program, she studies successful Public Organizations, in a first step focusing on social housing Organizations and water boards in the Netherlands. Ash making connections between academic and practical knowledge is important, she ook gives workshops to practitioners on successful governance and change management.

She obtained her PhD in Political Science in April 2016 at the Free University of Brussels (Belgium) and has published on new party survival, strategic voting, and political parties as Organizations.

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Mallory Compton

SPG Member

Mallory E. Compton is a postdoctoral researcher with the Department of Governance Studies. She focuses her research on comparative public policy, political economy, and public administration. Her overarching goal is to investigate the meaning and determinants of success in public policy design and implementation.  Mallory’s work sits at the intersection of public policy feedback, individual preferences and demand for social policies, and a rational choice theory of social capital. Thus far, her substantive focus has been on economic insecurity and social policy in developed contexts.

Mallory received her PhD in Political Science from Texas A&M University in 2016, and her Master of Public Administration in Public and Economic Policy from the London School of Economics in 2010.

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Jo Luetjens

SPG Member

Jo Luetjens is undertaking her PhD as part of the Successful Public Governance team, at the Utrecht School of Governance. Her PhD project focuses on explaining certain general interest public policy reforms in terms of endurance – or lack thereof. From 2013-2017, she was a research assistant at the Australia and New Zealand School of Government. Thus far, her substantive research focus has been on efforts to improve public sector performance and efficiency. She completed her Master of Public Policy and Management at the University of Melbourne’s School of Government in 2016. 

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Lauren Fahy

SPG Member

Lauren Fahy is a PhD candidate at the Utrecht School of Governance. Her PhD concerns the legitimation strategies of regulatory agencies. In 2016, Lauren completed her Masters of Public Administration with the Australian National University.  Prior to commencing her PhD she worked for six years on environmental policy, law, and regulation for the Australian federal government.

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Bijlhouwerstraat 6, 3511 ZC Utrecht, The Netherlands

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This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No694266)