A new instrument – motivational postures in practice: Action research into the role of motivational postures in the enforcement of social security legislation in the Netherlands


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Based on previous research on enforcement of social security in the Netherlands, we introduced the perspective “smart enforcement” (Hertogh, Bantema, Weyers, Winter & De Winter). When we ignore other factors and circumstances, we see that the (experienced) sanctioning is not, but the (experienced) persuasion is related to compliance. The extent to which beneficiaries comply with the obligations of their benefit depends on the perceived chance of being caught and the profit that is expected from the violation. Our research shows that the motivational postures of beneficiaries are important for compliance. The individual profile of beneficiaries can be mapped based on five "motivational postures" distinguished by Valerie Braithwaite: commitment, capitulation, resistance, disengagement and game playing. The first two attitudes are characterized by a positive attitude toward the law and law enforcement, and the remaining three attitudes are characterized by an increasing negative attitude. A person can have multiple motivational postures at the same time. "Commitment" and "capitulation" have a positive relationship with compliance, while "resistance," "disengagement" and "game playing” are negatively related to compliance. The level of compliance in social security benefits not so much from "more" enforcement, but from "smarter" enforcement. In other words, the effectiveness of enforcement in social security is not only determined by tougher or softer measures, but also by the extent to which the enforcement style is tailored to the specific backgrounds and expectations of the beneficiary. The principle of "smart enforcement" is that the individual profile of the beneficiary must be taken into account as much as possible when setting up the enforcement relationship. Enforcers should be able to match their behavior to the profile of beneficiaries. To help employees determine the profile of their clients, we developed an electronic analysis tool (the ‘prototype’). We tested the prototype at one social assistance agency in the Netherlands. After the test-phase, we interviewed beneficiaries and employees about their experiences with the prototype.
Originele taal-2English
StatusPublished - mei-2021
EvenementLaw and Society Association 2021 Annual Meeting: Crisis, healing and re-imagining - United States, Chicago
Duur: 26-mei-202130-mei-2021


ConferenceLaw and Society Association 2021 Annual Meeting
Internet adres

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