Interim dean appointed for Philosophy faculty

Frank van der Duijn Schouten (foto Uva)

As of 1 October 2016, Professor Frank van der Duijn Schouten, Emeritus Professor of Mathematics of Operations Research and former Rector Magnificus of Tilburg University and VU University Amsterdam, will be serving as interim dean of EUR’s faculty of Philosophy. Van der Duijn Schouten will be heading a study into the long-term development of the faculty’s programme portfolio and the recruitment of new academic talent. The faculty’s present dean, Professor Jack Vromen, has announced that he will not be pursuing a second term of office. Professor Vromen will be stepping down at his own request in order to concentrate on his academic activities. The schedule for September will be devoted to transferring current programmes and responsibilities and familiarising the future interim dean with faculty arrangements.

While Erasmus University’s Executive Board attaches strong importance to philosophy as one of the academic fields studied at the University, it is also concerned about the Philosophy faculty’s continuity in the longer term. For this reason, the Executive Board has decided to devote the year ahead to a careful study of Erasmus University's options for fully and sustainably incorporating Philosophy as a field of academic study within the University’s total offer. This study is not specifically aimed at reducing costs. 

The Executive Board wishes to express its exceptional gratitude to Professor Vromen for his strong efforts in recent years to guide the faculty through a relatively difficult period. Among other initiatives, Professor Vromen headed the launch of the successful Double Degree programme, which allowed several hundreds of students to follow a Philosophy bachelor programme in addition to their main degree programme.

Careful exploration of options
To gain further insight into Philosophy’s future options as a field of study at Erasmus University, Professor Frank van der Duijn Schouten will be appointed as the faculty’s interim dean for a period of one year. Van der Duijn Schouten has been asked to formulate recommendations regarding the sustainable development of the faculty’s portfolio of degree programmes and the recruitment of new academic talent, in order to strengthen and raise the profile of the Philosophy field and Erasmus University in general. In addition, he will be examining how best to structure the support structure for the recommended measures. In this process, the interim dean will explicitly involve staff members of the Philosophy faculty and other faculties, in order to create broad support for the recommended programme.

The Faculty Council has spoken with Professor Van der Duijn Schouten and has shared its perspectives on the intended appointment and brief with the Executive Board. The Executive Board is confident that together with the members of staff, Professor Van der Duijn Schouten will arrive at a number of balanced and constructive recommendations.

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