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    Year opening 1 september 2020

    Summer holidays, how wonderful! A few weeks of fun and recharging, after which we will look to the future again: the new academic year. During the past few months so many things have happened; great things have been created, and we want to elaborate on those in 2020/2021.

    New ideas, original approaches to distance education, surprising collaborations, you name it. And… we do also look forward to lessons in the classroom, the lab, the practical workplace.

    We cannot wait to get back to work again with students. The impact of Covid-19 on the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences was quite something. But it was not all negative. Opportunities arose that probably would not have in a ‘normal’ situation, or at least not as quickly. Thankfully, we can combine the new normal with increased lessons on location.

    The new academic year promises to be another special year. We are excited and ready for it. We are ready for the year to start. The start of something very special.

    We are celebrating it on Tuesday 1 September 2020 with the official launch of the academic year 2020/2021. Online, of course.

    Please Note: The programme of the start of the academic year 2020/2021 is in Dutch.

    Programme online year opening

    Tuesday 1 september
    14.30 - 15.00  Pubquiz: everything you ever wanted to know about the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and the city of Rotterdam
    15.00 - 16.00  Official launch of the new academic year with events such as the Student Award and Exceed Expectations Grant 
    16.00 – 16.25  HR Talks & podcast

    Talks & podcast

    RUAS Talk 1: Indispensable skills, for now and in the future

    By: Wesley dos Santos, alumnus and entrepreneur

    Study programmes change, jobs change, work changes. Everything changes all the time. But what are the skills that will always be important to make your dreams come true? What are the skills that make us human and that cannot be taken over by technology?

    Tinkering, hustling and circular thinking. For me, these are the three essential skills that are applicable to every student and employee at this very moment. All with the aim of bringing you one step closer to your best self.


     Wesley dos Santos is a born entrepreneur, speaker and tinkerer. After he studied Business Administration at the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences, he successfully founded three companies: Diversité Footwear, UniekCV and iKapitein. All three by using the same skills he likes to talk about: tinkhustcularity.


    Wesley dos Santos


    RUAS Talk 2: Maker of the future or a result of the past?

    By: Justien Marseille, Research Lecturer and trendwatcher

    Do we return to the 'old normal', or do we seize the opportunity to reshape the future of our field of work, our education? Do we cling to roles and customs that were once handy and even innovative, but after the pandemic they may be holding us back? Will the school building still be the best place to transfer knowledge, or will we be learning from a lecturer who is on call and on demand? And why do we stick to four years in the classroom when we have lifelong questions, and the answers can be found everywhere?

     During this talk we will look at methods that offer a basis for designing the unpredictable future and we explore trends and changes that are already visible in the undercurrent and that stimulate us to think about education for the future. A future that we can influence. A future that has already begun.

     Justien Marseille is Research Lecturer at Research Centre Creating 010 at Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. For more than 25 years, Justien has been engaged in mapping out possible futures and researching emerging trends and developments in the market and society.

    Justien Marseille

    RUAS Talk 3: More data, less freedom?

    By: Maaike Harbers, professorArtificial Intelligence & Society

    Many countries are experimenting with 'corona' apps, and the popularity of monitoring software for employees who are working from home has risen sharply since the pandemic. The fact that such applications collect much data from citizens is controversial. Infringement of privacy is by far the most frequently heard argument against ever-increasing data collection. The focus on privacy, however, mainly draws attention to the consequences of data sharing for individual citizens, as a result of which even greater social effects are likely to be overlooked. This talk addresses the consequences of large-scale data collection for our society and, in particular, the threat to our (digital) freedom. Examples are 'corona' apps, software that assesses applicants, and social credit schemes.

    Maaike Harbers is Professor Artificial Intelligence & Society at Research Centre Creating 010 and Research Lecturer for the study programme Creative Media and Game Technologies (CMGT), both at the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. She conducts research into the influence of artificial intelligence on values such as privacy, freedom and equality, and how designers can develop new technology (artificial intelligence in particular) based on values. For example, she has developed various design methods within the Value Sensitive Design approach that help designers to take into account the ethical and social consequences of technology. In addition, she is responsible for the development of the conversation tool 'Make Me Think', which is used in various study programmes.

    Maaike Harbers

    Podcast: Higher professional education – now and the future

    Door: podcast producers Jaap Jansen & PG Kroeger, platform Betrouwbare Bronnen

    Rarely did higher education face such challenges as at the beginning of the academic year 2020/2021. Very Rotterdam-like: 'Wir schaffen das! It is for that reason that partners such as administrators, businesses, research and study success teams have taken a variety of approaches to daring, innovative higher education.

    The historical column of Kroeger also captures a highlight in the history of higher professional education with the realisation of another game changer: the work of Jan Karel Gevers.

    Guests podcast:


    • Ron Bormans, Chairman of the Executive Board Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences
    • Hans de Jong, President Philips Netherlands
    • Maaike Harbers, Professor Artificial Intelligence & Society, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences
    • Jean-Marie Molina, Research Lecturer Study Success, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences
    • PG Kroeger, historian and co-host Betrouwbare Bronnen
    • Jaap Jansen, host Betrouwbare Bronnen


    Reliable sources