This project concerns the legal position of semi-public entities. Semi-public entities are defined as private bodies that perform an element of a public function or are institutionally linked to ‘traditional’ governmental authorities. Institutional relationships can exist through governmental shareholdings or the government’s power to give instructions, to approve decisions of the private entity, or to appoint or dismiss its directors. Government funding can also be seen as constituting an institutional relationship. Another important characteristic of semi-public entities is their performance of a public function. Semi-public entities are therefore situated at the intersection of public and private law. This raises questions about the divide between the two areas of law. This project especially concerns questions regarding the applicability of substantive-law standards, access to justice and public accountability and democratic control.
The Centre for Public Contract Law & Governance is an expert centre of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. It focuses on government contracts, public procurement, distributing scarcity, public-private legal relationships, semi-public entities, and distribution of responsibilities on the market.