Interim dean Campus Fryslân to become chairman Universities of the Netherlands

Campus Fryslân interim dean Caspar van den Berg of Campus Fryslân will succeed Jouke de Vries as chairman of the umbrella organisation Universities of the Netherlands (UNL) on June 1.

UG boss De Vries, who temporarily held the post after Pieter Duisenberg left, called Van den Berg an ‘excellent administrator and brilliant administrative expert’.

‘His managerial and political experience and his track record in academics make him the ideal new president of Universities of the Netherlands.’

Academic and administrator

Caspar van den Berg Photo: RUG

Van den Berg has been professor of global and local governance since 2017 and interim dean of Campus Fryslân since February 2023. In addition to his work at the UG, he has been professor by special appointment of transitions in the public sector at Leiden University since 2021.

Van den Berg was a member of the Council for Public Administration between 2019 and 2022. Since 2022, he has been a member of the Senate for the VVD. He will remain so even during his UNL presidency, although he will step down from the committee for research, culture and science.

Although Van den Berg will leave Campus Fryslân behind, he will remain at the UG as an honorary professor. He will also remain affiliated with Leiden University.

Strengthening cooperation

Van den Berg is looking forward to further strengthening cooperation between universities. ‘Dutch universities play an indispensable role in Dutch society and economy. There is a lot at stake; I consider it an honour to continue working on the right conditions for education and research in the Netherlands. We can do that by acting in unison and taking the lead ourselves.’

As president of UNL, he wants to make ‘universities a free, safe, and stimulating environment for all’.

It hasn’t yet been announced who will succeed Van den Berg as dean of Campus Fryslân.

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