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The Executive Board of the University of Amsterdam (UvA) has appointed Hans Wijers as chairman of the Supervisory Board of SEO Amsterdam Economics (SEO) with effect from 1 January 2021. He succeeds Jacques Schraven, who has been chairman of the Supervisory Board since 2009 and who will step down after completing two terms.

Hans Wijers is a very experienced director and supervisor. After his period as economic affairs minister in the Kok-1 cabinet, he headed the Dutch office of the Boston Consulting Group and was CEO of Akzo Nobel. In addition, he has held numerous supervisory positions and is currently, among other things, chairman of the supervisory board of ING.

Wijers says: ‘I am looking forward to this renewed acquaintance with applied economics science. In the beginning of my career I was an active researcher myself. From my experiences in consultancy, public administration and business since then, I hope to contribute to the growth and success of this top institute for applied economics.’

SEO director Bas ter Weel is very pleased that Wijers has been willing to take on the role of chairman. ‘For SEO it is important to have a chairman with knowledge of the research market and someone who can represent the organisation with authority in the best interests of SEO. Just like Jacques Schraven, I expect Hans Wijers to be very much able to provide us with significant support and advice.’

SEO Amsterdam Economics is an independent research institute affiliated with the UvA. SEO was founded in 1949 by the University of Amsterdam's Faculty of Economics to conduct applied economic research. This makes SEO one of the oldest economic research institutes in the Netherlands. Since the 1980s, SEO has been an independent foundation with about 50 employees conducting research for government and industry.