Citizens in Action, What Do They Accomplish? A Systematic Literature Review of Citizen Initiatives, Their Main Characteristics, Outcomes, and Factors

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Abstract

There are high political and policy expectations of local and voluntary initiatives of citizens collaborating to provide public services themselves. Despite rising attention, existing research lacks systematic knowledge on the actual outcomes of citizen initiatives and on stimulating or hampering factors. Therefore, we present a systematic literature review using the PRISMA approach on citizen initiatives and related terms. The studies show citizens being able to achieve outcomes touching upon a broad range of public values. Furthermore, the review presents contributing factors, like government support and boundary spanning leadership. Yet, the field of citizen initiatives in the social sciences can benefit from more methodological and analytical rigor. We therefore conclude with a conceptual framework for community self-management that identifies relationships between outcomes and relevant factors and discuss future research directions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1176-1194
Number of pages19
JournalVoluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations
Volume30
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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