Crises, Inquiries and the Politics of Blame

  • Sandra L. Resodihardjo

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Sandra L. Resodihardjo
    Pages 1-9
  3. Sandra L. Resodihardjo
    Pages 11-31
  4. Sandra L. Resodihardjo
    Pages 33-45
  5. Sandra L. Resodihardjo
    Pages 47-121
  6. Sandra L. Resodihardjo
    Pages 123-131
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 133-134

About this book


“This study probes deeply into the dynamics of the blame games that seem now to have become an inevitable part of advanced societies’ responses to negative events. Resodihardjo’s forensic analysis of how such negative events get framed, investigated and accounted for significantly advances our understanding of how incidents and crises affect the reputations and political capital of public authorities, and how they can foster but also significantly impede institutional learning.”
—Paul ’t Hart, Utrecht University, The Netherlands

“The crisis is often not even over before the mud starts flying. This little gem of a book outlines causes and consequences of blame games. The author offers strategies for dealing with these blame games. An emerging scholar writing a valuable primer on surviving blame games - warmly recommended!”
—Arjen Boin, Leiden University, The Netherlands

“This is an important book. Crises are followed by questions and the accountability phase inevitably involves the blame game. In using in-depth case study analysis of tragic incidents at festivals, Sandra Resodihardjo explores why and how blame games start, evolve and are then influenced by a variety of factors. This is a fascinating read, when things go badly wrong the cycle of blame is often complex, involving multiple actors and organisations often battling to frame the event to their own agenda. This should be essential reading not just for scholars studying this critical area of public policy, but practitioners who would undoubtedly learn a lot from the analytical oversight and forensic detail contained in this excellent book.”
—Mark Bennister, University of Lincoln, United Kingdom

This book furthers our understanding of blame games following a crisis event by combining theory and practice in order to answer questions such as: Who is blamed and why? How much blame is this person receiving and why? How can this person respond? And why do these responses not always work?

Sandra L. Resodihardjo is Assistant Professor in Public Administration at the Institute for Management Research, Radboud University, The Netherlands. 


blame games learning accountability phase balance perceptions framing blame attribution blame responses reasons catalytic inquiry influencing an inquiry rituals conflicting mayoral roles/duties tenure resignation backfiring strategies rituals context sub-blame games pension

Authors and affiliations

  • Sandra L. Resodihardjo
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Management ResearchRadboud UniversityNijmegenThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

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