chapter  8
THE CORPORATIST CHANNEL AND CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE NETHERLANDS
ByJantine Oldersma
Pages 19

This practice of consultation, however, has not always been considered desirable. Some political theorists see it as a valuable addition to democratic politics, as creating a better chance for citizens to be heard (see Lijphart 1977: 32-3; Dahl 1971:221). ‘Group representation’ is said to provide a chance for disadvantaged groups, like native tribes, ethnic minorities and women, to voice their interests (Young 1990:261-2; Kymlicka 1995:146-51). Others see it as essentially antidemocratic, as a way for some citizens to make themselves heard over others (see Bobbio 1984:51; Phillips 1991:120-46; Smith 1993: 15-47). Where general elections have established some kind of equality, corporatism favours some and excludes others. In this way, corporatism itself has become a bone of contention in Dutch politics, making the question of who actually participates in the councils and commissions an important one.