Philosophy on the move

This website was started in February 2015, restyled in February 2017. With this website I want to show you some of my work: a philosophy blog, some books, and some activities, with a separate page in Dutch.

Welcome to my website!

After my studies of mathematics and econometrics and military service I worked for Shell International Oil Company, in the Hague and London, until 1974. Among other things, I was involved in developing the tools for scenario analysis. There I learned about radical uncertainty, using scenario’s rather than forecasting, and I learned that robustness of a policy is more important than optimality. See the illustration.



Having learned about big business, I joined a research institute for small business, and learned about entrepreneurship. I obtained a PhD at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. After becoming scientific director of the institute, in 1984 I left, to pursue an academic career in social science, as a professor of innovation, at several universities in the Netherlands, until retirement in 2008.

I was awarded several prizes: Kapp prize (1996) Gunnar Myrdal prize (2004) and Schumpeter prize (2009). In 2000 I was elected member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. See my curriculum vitae. I published some 13 books and 350 articles, on innovation, entrepreneurship, alliances, networks, collaboration and trust. See my publication list.

In 2006 – 2008 I was member of the Dutch Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR), where I coordinated an advisory report on Innovation Policy. There, I learned how little innovation policy can deal with the radical uncertainty of radical innovation. There is an irrepressible tendency to revert to rational design.

I have been reading philosophy all my life, but started writing it after retirement.

A key part of my work, in both innovation and philosophy, is a theory of invention. In philosophy I use it to go beyond post modernism, preserving what is useful in it and replacing what is not, in a dynamic view of the self, meaning, truth, rationality, and ethics. Hence the title of the blog: philosophy on the move.

Another key subject is that of ‘Self and other’ in philosophy, and related to that, ‘Collaboration’ in economics, and ‘Trust’. On 6th July 2015 I had an interview on my work on trust. The video can be seen on YouTube.

Recently, I have been involved in lectures, interviews and discussions concerning basic income and horizontal control. Currently I am involved in a project for a fundamental revision of economic theory and teaching. I am available for lectures and seminars on the topics shown on this website.