De verstopte staat (The Clogged State)

M.A.R. van Roost, Prof. M.J.W. van Twist
Delft/Zutphen: Eburon (Eburon Publishers), 2004
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The newspapers these days are full of stories about lack of space, traffic jams, healthcare waiting lists and the shortage of cells in the prison system. These are just a few examples of the capacity problems encountered almost every day by citizens and organisations when it comes to public facilities. No wonder then that in each one of these separate domains, people are diligently searching for strategic interventions and innovative practices designed to lead to a smarter use of scarce public facilities.

Remarkably enough a sector-transcending review of all of these efforts is nevertheless lacking. That is too bad. Because no matter how divergent these public services may be, much can be learned from the management of scarce capacity by making comparisons, searching for analogies and the discovery of patterns.

Why is it possible to increase the occupancy of cells (two persons to one cell), but not possible to increase the occupancy in cars on the highway (carpooling)? Why do we give priority to the tow truck to disengage a traffic jam caused by a collision as quickly as possible, but deny priority to a doctor who is ill him/herself but can help reduce waiting lists. Why are the so-called ‘flats for pigs' not a preferred option for us as a means of intensive use of space, while we find it quite acceptable to live in stacked buildings ourselves? What can be learned from the floating greenhouse and the boats used to accommodate asylum seekers, the assisted-living healthcare complex and the road on poles as alternative arrangements for the approach to solving the space and capacity shortages experienced by public facilities?

This book is intended for anyone searching for inspiration and who is prepared to look beyond the boundaries of his/her own sector and for anyone who wants to make room for innovation in his/her own environment by no longer avoiding the confusing questions that arise from the noticeable differences and unexpected similarities with entirely different working environments.


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