Creating solutions in collaboration Annual report 2013

Stijn Brouwer Doctorate 

Policy entrepreneurs are crucial for water management renewal

20 December 2013Research

Water managers have to increasingly adapt and update themselves. In practice, changing policy is not easy. Researcher Stijn Brouwer, who started working at KWR in 2013, is awarded his doctorate from VU University Amsterdam on the subject of change strategies of water policy entrepreneurs.

For his research, Brouwer interviewed 339 policy entrepreneurs from municipalities, provinces, waterboards and the local secretariats of the Dutch Directorate for Public Works and Water Management (Rijkswaterstaat). He defines policy entrepreneurs as special civil servants who – just like private entrepreneurs – are characterised by their readiness to take risks and are constantly on the alert for opportunities for “marketing” innovative policy ideas. Brouwer mapped out the details of their strategic approach in fine detail.

Useful knowledge about water governance

Knowledge sharing among water sector professionals

Knowledge sharing among water sector professionals

The research shows that policy entrepreneurs – much more that had previously been assumed – are quite capable of orchestrating policy change if they effectively employ a mix of strategies. Within KWR, knowledge about water governance and the influence of individuals is applied in research into the links between people and organisations in the context of society’s assignments for the water sector – including internationally – and in research into change processes at water companies.

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