Belgium's foreign assistance : decision maker rhetoric and policy behavior

  • Marijke Breuning orcid logo


Not much has been written on the foreign assistance policy of Belgium, but work that focuses on it singly or in comparison with other cases tends to charge that Belgium lacks a coherent foreign assistance policy. This study examines the rhetoric of Belgian decision makers and the policy behavior of the state, utilizing a framework of four national role conception profiles, each bringing together a set of perceptions regarding the role decision makers perceive their state to play in this issue area.
Parliamentary debates for the period 1975-90 are coded for mention of themes associated with these profiles, white OECD data regarding the foreign aid expenditures for the same period provide insight into the policy behavior. It concludes that Belgian decision makers do not perceive foreign assistance as a separate issue area, but as inextricably linked with foreign (economie) policy.

How to Cite:

Breuning, M., (1994) “Belgium's foreign assistance : decision maker rhetoric and policy behavior”, Res Publica 36(1), 1-21. doi:

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Published on
30 Mar 1994
Peer Reviewed