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More politicians on board of housing corporations

Amsterdam knows the typical phenomenon of former politicians playing an important role in the supervision of housing corporations, NUL20 wrote six years ago. This has not changed since: the number of supervisory board members with a political background has in fact risen slightly. In 2010, large housing corporations in Amsterdam had on average 1.7 politicians serving on the supervisory board, compared to 1.1 nationally.

The NUL20 article pointed to advantages and disadvantages of politicians in a supervisory role:

Formally, there’s no problem. But corporations build in the city and one may ask whether (former) politicians have sufficient distance. On the other hand, it’s important for a corporation to get input from political circles. In the end, it’s about having the right mix.

In Amsterdam, 4 PvdA members served on boards in 2010 (3 in 2006), 3 GroenLinks members (2 in 2006), 2 VVD members (1 in 2006) and 1 D66 member (unchanged). No complete information is available for 2011 yet, but it appears that the PvdA may loose its dominant position. PvdA members Andersson and Sylvester left the Alliantie and fellow party member Van den Klinkenberg left Eigen Haard. At Ymere, car lobbyist Van Woerkom (VVD) joined the supervisory board.

This discussion is limited to corporations with at least 10,000 houses. Further, NUL20 includes the Alliantie as an Amsterdam corporation; while it is located in Huizen it has property in Amsterdam. The Amsterdam-based Woonzorg Nederland, which provides housing for the elderly across the country, was not included. This article is a spin-off of this analysis of abuses at housing corporations and the role of politicians on supervisory boards.

3 June 2012 |