Philosophy on the move

With this website I want to show you some of my work: a philosophy blog, some books, essays, and 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.

Having learned about big business, I joined a research institute for small business, and learned about entrepreneurship. I obtained a PhD in ecopnometrics at 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. I published 33 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. I have been involved in lectures, interviews and discussions concerning basic income and horizontal control, and in a project for a fundamental revision of economic theory.

I have written poems all my life, with intervals, in batches, and recently, after taking a course in writing poems and joining a poetry criticism group in Amsterdam, I started reshaping them. I published  three in a bundle pub;ished by the poetry group.   



Bart Nooteboom over het basisinkomen

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