Principles of good citizenship in administrative law
PhD student: Mrs M. Meulebrouck
Promotor: Prof S. Lierman
Duration: 1/10/2018 - 30/9/2022
The classic vertical hierarchy that characterises the government-citizen relationship in administrative procedures has always emphasised the responsibilities of the government towards the citizen. The citizen needs to be protected against the abuse of powers of the government. However, this relationship is gradually taking on a more horizontal nature. As a consequence, the so-called principles of good citizenship focus on the behaviour of the citizen towards the government. Citizens not only have rights, but they also have certain duties or responsibilities in their relationship with the government. Although these principles of good citizenship are recognised in Belgium and while the evolution towards more responsibilities for the citizen is clearly ongoing, no legal framework in administrative law is elaborated at this point. Next to the statutory duties in the administrative procedure, the citizen is expected to be alert, to act in good faith, to cooperate with the government, etc. solely on the basis of unwritten principles emanating from case law. Therefore, this research will identify, categorise and assess aforementioned civic duties to elaborate a framework to provide the citizen with a better legal understanding and protection. The relational turn in administrative law is a widespread debate across Europe, inter alia in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. This research will examine the implications of a civic duties theory in the Belgian legal order.
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