Public officials can be reluctant to use citizens’ input in decision-making, especially when turnout is low and participants are unrepresentative of the wider population. Using Fritz Scharpf’s democratic legitimacy approach, the authors conducted a survey-based vignette experiment to examine how the input legitimacy of participatory processes affects (1) public officials’ willingness to use public participation in administrative decision-making, (2) their assessment of the quality of the policy decision, and (3) their anticipation of popular support for the policy outcome. The study shows that turnout and participants’ representativeness have a positive and significant effect on public officials’ attitudes toward public participation. Specifically, participants’ representativeness influences public officials’ willingness to use citizens’ inputs more than turnout.

dx.doi.org/10.1111/puar.13138., hdl.handle.net/1765/130319
Public Administration Review
Department of Public Administration and Sociology (DPAS)

Migchelbrink, K., & Van de Walle, S.G.J. (2019). When Will Public Officials Listen? A Vignette Experiment on the Effects of Input Legitimacy on Public Officials’ Willingness to Use Public Participation. Public Administration Review. doi:10.1111/puar.13138.