Nyenrode & (Business) Society


Nyenrode contributes to (business) society in many ways; through research, education and our thought leaders, as well as through our community network. 

Highlights 2019 - 2020

Research: Family businesses are suffering but remain optimistic 

A research team led by Roberto Flören, RSM professor of Family Business and Business Transfer, investigated how the 270,000 family businesses in the Netherlands dealt with the coronavirus crisis. The team conducted a survey among Dutch family businesses using the RSM-Nyenrode Family Businesses research panel. The results from early April 2020 showed that companies expected an average turnover loss of 40% in April 2020 compared to April 2019. These businesses also expected to make a loss for the whole of 2020, but expressed that they would do everything they could to keep their employees employed and stated that they were optimistic about the future. The research team held a new survey in July 2020, in which many family businesses indicated that they would come out of the pandemic stronger than they had initially thought at the beginning of the crisis. More than 65% of the same group of respondents said they were more optimistic about their company's chances of survival in July compared to the situation in April 2020. The loss of turnover in June 2020 was only 3% compared to the same period last year. 

Marlies de Vries portretfoto

Contributing to quality improvement of accountancy

In the spring of 2020, Program Director of Controlling Marlies de Vries was appointed as one of the coordinators of the Future of the Auditing Sector at the behest of the Minister of Finance, alongside her position at Nyenrode. Together with Chris Fonteijn, her work as a coordinator will involve collaborating with the sector, the Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM) and the Royal Netherlands Institute of Chartered Accountants (NBA) to improve the quality of audits. De Vries was asked to take on this role as an expert in the field of accounting and a previous member of the Committee for the Future of the Auditing Sector, which presented its final report to Minister of Finance Wopke Hoekstra on January 31, 2020. 

In January 2020, the Accountancy Monitoring Committee presented its final report. The Accountancy Monitoring Committee was established by the sector in 2015. In its final report, the committee expresses criticism regarding the progress of quality improvement in the auditing sector and calls for “impactful interventions”, offering a list of 30 recommendations for the sector. Accountancy professor Marcel Pheijffer served as a member of this committee.

Nyenrode students selflessly support business owners  

When the COVID-19 outbreak hit the Netherlands, society – and therefore education as well – came to a halt. Students could still attend online lectures, but tutorials and other study activities were canceled. At the same time, business owners were struggling with declining revenues due to the corona crisis. Stijn van der Vat and Tjibbe Steenstra – two students of Nyenrode’s BSc in Business Administration – wanted to help entrepreneurs instead of keeping their knowledge to themselves. That is why they started TheFAC, helping over a hundred business owners by giving them free advice. 

RSM and Nyenrode Business University launches European Real Estate Tax Guides

RSM International, the leading global network of audit, tax and consulting firms focused on the middle market, and Nyenrode Business University, the only private university in the Netherlands, have jointly launched their latest Guides to Commercial Real Estate Taxation in Europe. The online guides give cross-border businesses, investors and other stakeholders a comprehensive overview of real estate taxes in various European countries. The guides take users through the real estate cycle from start to finish, and provide practical insight into acquiring, holding and selling commercial real estate that is held either directly or indirectly by domestic or foreign investors and legal entities. Tom Berkhout, Professor of Real Estate at Nyenrode: “This tax guide offers a useful overview of the complex fiscal world of real estate. The authors are local RSM tax specialists who advise clients on a wide range of topics on a daily basis.”

Dies Natalis 2019 speech: Empathy as a new customer-oriented approach

Francine van Dierendonck

Nyenrode’s 73rd Dies Natalis celebration on November 20, 2019, focused on the central theme of customer orientation in the pension sector. Francine van Dierendonck, a member of the management board of pension provider APG and an alumna of Nyenrode’s New Board Program, delivered the keynote speech in which she called for more empathy for and understanding of the actual needs of customers and end users. Francine van Dierendonck already had a long career in the consumer market before starting her current position at APG. 

Mauro Petriccione opens the 2019-2020 academic year

“We now collectively realize what scientists have been trying to tell us for years: the biggest and most radical cause of the changes in our climate is the greenhouse gas effect,” says Mauro Petriccione, Director General of CLIMA. This is the directorate that leads the European Commission's efforts to fight climate change within the European Union and beyond. On September 2, 2019, Petriccione held the keynote speech titled “How does Europe cope – and sometimes lead – in an ever faster-changing world? The case of climate change” during the opening of the 2019-2020 academic year at Nyenrode Business University.