Chief Diversity Officer Semiha Denktaş hands over the baton to Jane Murray Cramm after nearly six years

Campus Woudestein
Semiha Denktaş smiles into the camera.

Denktaş will continue her duties as professor of behavioural sciences and vice dean of research at the Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences. Cramm is currently director of research at Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management and will succeed Denktaş from 1 April 2024.

Prof. Semiha Denktaş started as Chief Diversity Officer on 1 October 2018, responsible for the then Diversity and Inclusion programme. She was tasked with developing targeted and effective policies to achieve an inclusive learning and working environment. Together with dr. Gwen de Bruin, she built a professional team and focused on designing an integrated programme in the first period.

Achievements of IDEA Center

Increasing the share of female professors was among her top priorities. In 2020, EUR went from the last place in the Dutch Network of Women Professors (LNVH) rankings to a middle position by achieving a growth from 14 to 25 percent of female professors. In addition, making the university more accessible to all was a mission for her. Under her leadership, EUR developed a successful outreach programme with primary and secondary schools in Rotterdam. 

In January 2023, the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Access Centre (IDEA) was launched, EUR’s own centre of expertise that enabled further development at the institute level. IDEA’s work did not go unnoticed in Europe. Denktaş not only participated in UNIC (European University of Post-Industrial Cities) with her team, but also led the European consortium IDEA-net since 2022, aiming to help set up diversity and inclusion programmes in other universities. Last year, the IDEA Centre published the book Van woorden naar daden (From words to deeds. A guide to an inclusive organization). An English-language edition will be published in the spring.

Semiha Denktaş: “EUR is my second home. A university where people work with their sleeves rolled up, as befits Rotterdam. In recent years, I have put my heart and soul into making our EUR just a little bit nicer for everyone. Bringing the IDEA Centre to life was an important milestone for me so that the work can continue in the years to come. It was a privilege to be able to contribute to this, together with my wonderful colleagues at the IDEA Centre. I believe that leadership also includes making room for a new Chief Diversity Officer after such a great period so that she can continue the course set out.”

prof.dr. Jane Murray Cramm smiles into the camera wearing a green suit.

Successor Jane Murray Cramm

Prof. Jane Murray Cramm is professor of person centered care at EUR’s Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM). Jane Murray Cramm has been director of research at ESHPM since 2022; she is stepping down from this position on April 1 to focus fully on her new position.

Research on person centered care and diversity has been a core focus throughout her career. She previously served as Director of Education, and Social Safety Officer and Diversity Officer at ESHPM. As Principal Investigator, she has contributed to studies evaluating several large-scale complex intervention programs, and she is also a member of the Dutch Healthcare Institute (ZIN) Quality Council, member of the supervisory board of Mijzo and member of SER Top Women.

"I believe that diversity is not only a moral imperative but a strategic advantage, driving innovation, creativity, and resilience."

Prof. Jane Murray Cramm

Jane Murray Cramm: “As the new Chief Diversity Officer, I aspire to be a catalyst for positive change within our university, working tirelessly to ensure that all individuals, regardless of their background, feel valued and empowered to contribute their unique strengths. I believe that diversity is not only a moral imperative but a strategic advantage, driving innovation, creativity, and resilience. I aim to fill Semiha's shoes with the same commitment and passion for diversity, equity, and inclusion. Together with the IDEA team, I hope to shape a future where diversity is celebrated, enriching the experiences of all within our university.”

Worthy successor

Prof. Annelien Bredenoord, rector magnificus Erasmus University Rotterdam: “The Executive Board is very grateful for what Semiha Denktaş and her team have achieved in recent years. Diversity and inclusion are core values of our university. Under Semiha’s leadership, we have made great strides towards an inclusive Erasmian community, where all students and staff have the space to feel valued, respected and can develop to their full potential. Both professionally and personally, Jane Murray Cramm has the experience and enthusiasm that make her a worthy successor. As the Executive Board we are therefore confident that under her leadership our IDEA Centre will take new steps towards an even more inclusive university.”

More information

Erasmus University Rotterdam is convinced that teaching and research are at their best with a wide diversity of scientists, students and staff. People who each bring their own background, knowledge and experience. Read more on what we do.

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On Friday, October 6, IDEA Center (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Access Center) of Erasmus University Rotterdam presented the book Van woorden naar daden.
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On November 30th, group 7 of primary school IBS Risala visited Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) for a lecture for kids on nudging.
Prof Semiha Denktas tells primary school kids about nudging
Murray Cramm wil meedenken en -bewegen met de ingezette weg naar passende zorg en samen beslissen. Zij treedt per 1 augustus aan als lid.
prof.dr. Jane Murray Cramm smiles into the camera wearing a green suit.

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