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.

Bart Nooteboom over het basisinkomen

Fragmenten uit een documentaire over het basisinkomen, in opdracht van LUCA School of Arts