Universiteit Leiden

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Bernard Steunenberg

Professor Public Administration

Prof.dr. B. Steunenberg
+31 70 800 9499

Bernard Steunenberg has been Professor of Public Administration at Leiden University since 1 September 1999.

More information about Bernard Steunenberg

Bernard Steunenberg has been Professor of Public Administration at Leiden University since 1 September 1999. He conducts research on European politics and policymaking, including the relationship between the Union and its Member States on the transposition and implementation of European policy. In his work, he uses perspectives from game theory, deliberative theory, public choice and analytical politics. In addition, he regularly organizes national and international discussions on the EU. Get to know Bernard Steunenberg and how Europe influences us.

Bernard Steunenberg received a BA (1979) and an MA (1983) in Public Administration from the University of Twente. In 1989 he received his PhD also from the University of Twente. He was Assistant Professor at the Department of Economics, University of Twente (1986-94), Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Netherlands Institute of Governance (NIG) (1994-99), and Associate Professor of Public Finance at the Faculty of Public Administration and Public Policy, University of Twente (1994-99). He has been a visiting scholar at various universities, including Fernand Braudel Senior Fellow at the Political Science Department of the European University Institute in Florence (2006-7). As the Jean Monnet Ad Personam Chair in European Politics (2009-14) he established the Jean Monnet Center of Excellence at Leiden University. 


Bernard Steunenberg taught a range of courses on the EU in various programs at Leiden University, for example European Union Politics and Policy (BA), EU Decision Making (MA), and Decision Making and Policy Implementation in the EU (REMA). He is teaching the courses Political Science (BA-1) and Decision-Making and Rational Choice (BA-3). He also taught several summer schools on EU politics and policy and has been a guest lecturer in several programs.


Bernard Steunenberg is the founder and a general editor of the open access journal Research and Politics. The journal started publishing papers in 2014 and is already a well-cited journal especially in social media.

Research Projects 

Research on EU decision-making

Central to this work are the strategic interaction between political actors, their interests and the formal and informal structures of the decision-making process. Bernard Steunenberg focuses on legislative procedures and the balance of power between the main European ‘institutions’, the functioning of comitology procedures, the position of the European Parliament in the EU, the role of working parties in the Council of Ministers, and the impact of trialogues as part of the codecision procedure, among others. A recent project explores the effects of the Lisbon Treaty.

Research on coordination and implementation of EU policy

In this work Bernard Steunenberg explores national coordination mechanisms and how domestic actors, including national parliaments and ministerial civil servants, influence European policy. This includes investigating the ways in which European policies affect national policies and implementation structures after their adoption, not only at the national level, but also at the level of local or regional government. In addition, Bernard Steunenberg is curious as to how national transposition and implementation of policy affects the success and effectiveness of European policy.

Research on the popular acceptance of the EU

Linked to the MAXCAP research project, Steunenberg focuses on national discourses regarding important European issues. One project focuses on the views of citizens on Turkey’s membership of the EU. Recently, research is done on national discourses regarding enlargement and European integration in various countries. These projects explore how citizens evaluate and appreciate European integration, which is important in order to address current EU-wide issues on legitimacy and support.

List of research projects

  • New European priorities and decentralized governance
  • Discourses on enlargement in the EU, new member states and candidate countries;
  • The use of the scrutiny reserve in the Dutch parliament
  • Analyzing EU Policies: the implementation of policy in EU member states;
  • TEMPUS project, which aims at the development of EU studies as a viable field of study in Azerbaijan that conforms to higher European standards

The data used for several research projects is available at the Harvard Dataverse.



Professor Public Administration

  • Faculty Governance and Global Affairs
  • Instituut Bestuurskunde

Work address

Wijnhaven Building
Turfmarkt 99
2511 DP The Hague
Room number 4.110



  • Stichting Research and Politics bestuurslid en voorzitter
  • Journal 'Research and Politics' Editor
  • Journal 'Bestuurswetenschappen' Member of the Editorial Board
  • Journal 'European Union Politics' Member of the Editorial Board
  • External Expert to the Promotions Committee, LSE, London Member
  • 'Journal of Common Market Studies' Member of Editorial Board

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