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Mid-2015, hundreds of thousands of people fleeing the Near East sought asylum in the European Union. At the spike of the influx, over 4,000 asylum seekers, most from war-torn Syria, were landing in the Netherlands each week. The Dutch Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers was overwhelmed: it had to create dozens of reception centers from scratch, sometimes within just 48 hours, and sought to provide beds to all those entering. 

Anthony Slinkert, one of the agency’s regional managers, was charged with finding locations for new centers in the eastern part of the country. His work on the ground was directly impacted by tense political debates in the European Union, in national and local governments, as well as by the ongoing debates in media and in towns across his region, since the arrival of the asylum seeker evoked unrest in local communities— exactly where Slinkert had to carry out his job.

Learning Objective:
To analyze the strategic environment of a public manager, who is operating amid political and socio-cultural turmoil, with the help of “the strategic triangle” (public value theory) in order to:

  • Identify (perceived) public value gains and losses of immigration policy that the manager needs to implement
  • Analyze the stakeholder environment, including social actors with (perceived) positive and negative stakes in the policy outcomes
  • Identify key strategic challenges for the public manager



Other Details

Case Author:
Sanderijn Cels
Faculty Lead:
Sanderijn Cels
Pages (incl. exhibits):
The Netherlands