1913: Netherlands School of Commerce
Erasmus University Rotterdam has been in existence in its present form since 1973. Its history, however, dates back to 1913, the year in which the Netherlands School of Commerce (Nederlandsche Handels-Hoogeschool, NHH) was founded through private initiative with broad support from the Rotterdam business community.
Founded by entrepreneurs
The 'Founding Fathers' pf the Erasmus University Rotterdam were J.A. Ruys, C.A.P. van Stolk and W.C. Mees, which you can view from left to right and the picture at the top of this page. The photo is part of the historical collection of the photo archive of EUR.
The statutory recognition of higher education in commerce and economics as an academic discipline resulted in 1939 in a change of name. The NHH became the NEH (Nederlandse Economische Hogeschool) or Netherlands School of Economics. The growing complexity of society led in the 1960s to the arrival of the faculties of Law and Social Sciences, followed in later decades by Philosophy, History and Arts, and Business Administration.
From 1950, the Foundation for Higher Clinical Education used its best efforts to get a full academic medical study programme established in Rotterdam, and with success. In 1966 the government established the Medical Faculty Rotterdam, which was housed next to Dijkzigt Hospital. Together with the Sophia Children's Hospital and the Daniel den Hoed Clinic, it forms the University Hospital Rotterdam, which as of 1 January 2003 bears the name Erasmus MC.
In 1973, the Medical Faculty Rotterdam and the Netherlands School of Economics merged to become Erasmus University Rotterdam – the first university in the Netherlands named for a person, a man to whom Rotterdam owes the reputation it has held for centuries in the academic world, Desiderius Erasmus. In 2009, the International Institute of Social Sciences became part of Erasmus University. ISS is an internationally renowned institute in the field of development studies and international cooperation.
In the Centennial Room near the auditorium is the permanent exhibition about 100 years history of Erasmus University Rotterdam. Emphasis within the exhibition is given to Nobel Prize winner Prof. Jan Tinbergen. He received the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1969.