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Our Board

Our board consists of the following persons:

Drs. Maria Henneman (chair)

Maria Henneman has been appointed chair of the board of the Rathenau Instituut by Ingrid van Engelshoven, Minister of Education, Culture and Science, effective June 1, 2021.

Henneman gained renown as a journalist and presenter at the NOS Journaal and later as editor-in-chief of the current affairs programme 'Netwerk'. Since leaving journalism in 2004, she and her consultancy agency Henneman Strategies have focused on providing strategic communication and policy advice to companies, non-profit organisations and (local) government. She has also held numerous advisory and board positions, including at Radboud University and the Innovatieplatform. Since 2016, she has been chair of the Gender & Health programme committee at ZonMw.

Prof. Dr. M.N.C. Aarts

Noelle Aarts is professor of socio-ecological interactions and director of the Institute for Science in Society (ISiS) at Radboud University. 

Noelle Aarts (born 1957) is director of the Institute for Science in Society (ISiS) at Radboud University. She studied Biology and Cultural Anthropolgy and obtainted her PhD in 1998 at Wageningen UR with a doctoral thesis on the communication between the government and farmers about controversial nature and nature policy in the Netherlands. Before she was appointed professor Socio-Ecological Interactions at Radboud University in 2017, she was professor Communication and Change in Life Science Contexts at Wageningen UR. Noelle Aarts’ research focuses on the meaning of everyday conversations on tracks of complex change involving nature, human-animal relations and the use of land.

Drs. Felix Cohen

Felix Cohen is chairperson of the board of commissioners of Regina Coeli. During his extensive career he has held many supervisory positions.

Felix Cohen has always worked on the intersection of new technology and ‘normal people’. Currently, he works as an energy coach. In this role he advises consumers on energy saving. Furthermore, he is member of the board of Stichting Tuchtraad Verzekeringen. In addition, he writes a blog on sailing and politics. During his career, Cohen has managed change processes and reorganizations for numerous organisations. He worked as a marketing manager for Philips Information Systems. As the general director of the Consumentenbond he was at the helm of an organisation which has 80.000 paying members.

Dr. L.J.F. Guérin

Laurence Guérin is lector World Citizenship at The Hague University of Applied Sciences

Laurence Guérin (1971) is a lecturer on World Citizenship at The Hague University of Applied Sciences and a practitioner on Citizenship at ROC van Twente. She studied Business Administration at the Ecole Supérieur de Commerce de Rennes in France. After having worked for ten years in Basel (CH) in the pharmaceutical industry as, amongst other things, a quality manager, she studied Pedagogy at Utrecht University. She holds a PhD in Citizenship (political and pedagogical justification of civic education and civic didactics). She has developed and led the project "Beta citizenship" and currently leads the NRO educational research workshop "Democratization of critical thinking" at MBO level. The focus of the research in her practice and professorship is critical civic education in the context of vocational preparation, the promotion of youth participation and the impact of technology on social questions in a deliberative democracy.

Dr. J.A. Hoekstra MSc

Janneke Hoekstra has been a Land van Ons board member since March 2021 and runs a consultancy firm.

Janneke Hoekstra (1954) studied biology and statistics and started her career as a statistician, first at TNO and then at RIVM. Her career is dedicated to the connections between education, science and society. She contributed to research in the fields of agriculture, environment & nature and public health. In 2003, she became director of Knowledge and Innovation at the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality. From 2011 to 2020, she was director of the Faculty of Technology at the Hogeschool (university of applied sciences) in Arnhem and Nijmegen. In this position, she encouraged cooperation with the business industry in the field of research and education, among other things as co-initiator of a Centre of Expertise for sustainable and reliable energy, SEECE. She also chaired the national advisory board of the Vereniging Hogescholen (Association of Universities of Applied Sciences) for all technical programmes. Since 2021, she has been a board member of Land van Ons, with a portfolio in biodiversity and agriculture. This organisation aims to restore biodiversity and the landscape on farmland. They do this by taking ownership of farmland and, together with the farmer/tenant and local citizens, creating nature-friendly agriculture.

Prof. mr. dr. Erwin Muller

Erwin Muller has been dean of the Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs (FGGA) at Leiden University, Director of the Campus The Hague of Leiden University and professor of Safety, Security and Law at the same faculty.  

Erwin Muller (born 1965) is editor-in-chief of the Kluwer Series Handboeken Veiligheid and Tekst en Commentaar Openbare Orde en Veiligheid. He is also chair of the Supervisory Board of Lucas Education, director of the Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities and a member of the Supervisory Board of GGZ Noord-Holland-Noord. Before that, Muller was vice-chairman of the Dutch Safety Board and director of research for the Institute for Criminal Law and Criminology at Leiden University. He was also the director of the COT Institute for Security and Crisis Management, a member of the Dutch Council for Public Administration, the vice-dean of the Faculty of Law at Leiden University, the director of the Netherlands Police Academy, and the director of the Netherlands School of Public Administration. 

Drs. R. Rawal

Drs. R. (Rajash) Rawal is an independent education, leadership and strategy consultant. From 2018-2023 he has been a member of the College van Bestuur (Executive Board) of De Haagse Hogeschool. Rajash studied Government and Policy in Europe at the University of Teesside (United Kingdom). He obtained his master's degree in European Studies (specialisation in Political Science) from the University of Amsterdam.

Rajash has been affiliated with De Haagse Hogeschool for 25 years. He started as an exchange student, became a lecturer/researcher in the European Studies programme (then called HEBO) where he served as head of internationalisation and as a programme manager, among other things. From September 2015 onwards, he held the position of Director of the Faculty of Management and Organisation. He also taught the minor Media and Politics at De Haagse Hogeschool.

Professor dr. ir. Behnam Taebi

Full professor Behnam Taebi studied Material Science and Engineering (2006) and received his Ph.D. in Philosophy of Technology (2010).

He was affiliated with Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs (2014-2020) and a member of The Young Academy of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (DJA-KNAW, 2016-2021). Taebi is the co-Editor-in-Chief of ‘Science and Engineering Ethics’, co-editor of a volume on ‘The Ethics of Nuclear Energy’ and the author of a monograph on ‘Ethics and Engineering. An Introduction’. He has further served on the OECD Expert Panel that published the report Addressing societal challenges using transdisciplinary research in 2020.

Prof. dr. ir. Eefje Cuppen

As of 1 October 2022, professor Eefje Cuppen from Leiden University is the new director of the Rathenau Instituut.

The Chairman and other members of the Board are formally appointed by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and the Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR), at the nomination of the sitting members of the Board. According to our institutional decree, members are appointed by the Minister of Education, Culture, and Science for the duration of four years, with a possibility of extension.

If you have any questions for (or about) the Board, please email Diana Trimpert (executive secretary).