On Friday 1 October at 18:30, the last class of Arjo Klamer as professor Cultural Economist will take place. On the occasion of his departure, his new book ‘A Sense of Purpose: A practical Guide’ will be published. This book focusses on the “why” question. Why growth? What is it good for? Why art? What is it good for? What do you get out of bed for? It is a practical guide to formulating sincere answers.
Arjo Klamer spent 25 years researching and teaching the economics of art and culture at Erasmus University. After 25 years, Klamer concludes that the arts and culture should not serve the economy and society, as is generally assumed, but that the economy should serve the arts and culture. He argues that the economy is humane when it is driven by values and serves people and nature, and not the other way around. A conference on the value-based approach will take place from Friday 30/09 until October 2/10.
Klamer was one of the founders of the successful international master's programme Cultural Economics and Entrepreneurship, and of Academia Vitae, now called Akademeia (an institute for permanent education). He was active in the cultural spheres of Rotterdam (for example, as a member of the Rotterdam Culture Council) and he was alderman in Hilversum for the SP from 2014 to 2017. Klamer has campaigned for the development of the craft economy, and he warned against the risks of a common European currency in as early as 1992. He is a member of the Sustainable Finance Lab, chairman of Filosofie Oost-West, and he developed a values-based approach to the economy and the so-called "quality evaluator." Well-known works from the hand of Arjo Klamer are Conversations with Economists (1984), Verzuilde Dromen: 40 jaar of SER (1992), Value of Culture (1996), Speaking of Economics (2007), Pak Aan (2011), and Doing the Right Thing (2017). For years, he had a column in the NRC, then the Volkskrant and then with the GPD (the regional papers).
Before coming to Erasmus University, Arjo Klamer taught at Duke University, Wellesley College, University of Iowa and The George Washington University. Many doctorates within Erasmus University were established under his supervision. Seven of his PhD students have been awarded the title of Professor. Klamer also teaches at the School of Applied Philosophy, the AUC, in the Comenius Leergangen, for Akademeia, and he is guest professor at the VU.