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Endowed Chair of Marga Klompé
International Social Responsibility

Mirjam van Reisen appointed Professor of International Social Responsibility

Endowed chair established by the Marga Klompé Foundation

Mirjam van ReisenTilburg University has appointed Dr Mirjam van Reisen as of October 1, 2010, to hold the endowed chair of Social Responsibility. The Marga Klompé Foundation has established this chair at the Faculty of Humanities based on the inspiration that Marga Klompé, the first female government minister in the Netherlands, derived from the Roman Catholic religion.

With the appointment of Dr van Reisen, the Faculty of Humanities is further enhancing its expertise in the area religion and the public domain. Led by Prof. Erik Borgman, the ‘religion and the public domain’ research group focuses on religions and other ideologies and their influence on the public environment, the tensions that come into play, problems that arise and new relationships that come into existence. Van Reisen will participate in this research group. Among other pursuits, she will conduct research into social poverty policy in international cooperation between religions and cultures. She is specialized in EU development cooperation.

The Marga Klompé Foundation was established to preserve the ideological legacy of Marga Klompé (1912-1986). In the past 25 years, the Foundation has presented annual awards to initiatives of a social and practical nature that exemplify her vision. Marga Klompé was the first female government minister in the Netherlands. She was highly involved in the Roman Catholic Church and the Catholic People’s Party (KVP), devoting tremendous energy to the ideals of humanity, justice, peace and the emancipation of women. The Marga Klompé Foundation has established the endowed chair ‘Social Responsibility from a Roman Catholic Perspective’ to show that the Catholic social tradition that shaped Marga Klompé's thinking and actions is just as valid and vibrant today. The Foundation hopes that Mirjam van Reisen’s appointment to this endowed chair will reinvigorate appreciation for Marga Klompé’s ideological legacy and its modern-day applicability.

Dr Mirjam van Reisen (1962) studied Psychology of Culture and Religion (1981-1983) and Development Studies (1985-1988) at Radboud University Nijmegen. She worked as a researcher at Radboud University from 1989-1997 and she conducted research for the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Commission and various NGOs. She received her PhD in 2009 from Maastricht University for her dissertation on European development cooperation after the fall of the Berlin wall. She was a research consultant for the Nedworc Association in the Dutch town of Zeist from 1997 to 2003. She was a political advisor to Dutch Labour Party politician Max van den Berg and an advisor to the Eurostep network of NGOs. She set up the Europe External Policy Advisors agency in Brussels in 2003 and she is still the director of this organization.

Click here for Mirjam van Reisen's CV.