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Theo-Jan Renkema has been appointed as Professor of Practice in Data Analytics & Auditing

Published: 11th May 2020 Last updated: 04th June 2020

Tilburg University has appointed Dr. Theo-Jan Renkema as Professor of Practice in Data Analytics & Auditing, effective April 1, 2020. Renkema works for Rabobank as Head of the IT & Digital Audit Department. He will be working at the Tilburg School of Economics and Management (TiSEM) and the Jheronimus Academy of Data Science (JADS) in ’s-Hertogenbosch. The purpose of this appointment is strengthening our education and research in auditing and intensifying the collaboration with the auditing practice, in particular with respect to data science and artificial intelligence.

Contribution to research

Renkema’s research will focus on bridging the gap between theory and practice at the interface of data analytics and auditing. He will thus be working at the cutting edge of the disciplines of JADS’ and TiSEM’s expertise, respectively. Research topics will include auditing of algorithms, assessing data-driven business models, applying robotics and AI in auditing, and the professional practice development of the Audit profession, in particular of IT auditors.

Contribution to education

The teaching activities in the context of this professorship will entail, on the one hand, providing students with knowledge of how data analytics can be applied in auditing, and on the other hand, teaching them how data-driven business processes and algorithms can be studied and assessed.  Renkema will provide classes in Bachelor’s and Master’s as well as in post-Master’s programs and in continuing education for accountants. Professionals who can combine data analytics and auditing (and, in a broader sense, accounting, finance, and control) have great employability. As a Professor of Practice, he will be an inspiring role model for students, given his connection with the practical field. The size of the appointment is 0.1 FTE.

Professor of Practice

The Professor of Practice is a position for an innovative business leader or entrepreneur working in an internationally oriented company. In this way, Tilburg University wants to reinforce its impact on society and continue to strengthen its ties with practice.

Theo Jan Renkema was educated as  an economist and information scientist in Groningen (1992, cum laude) and earned his PhD in Technical Business Administration at Eindhoven University of Technology (1996, ICT Economics). After earlier research and consultancy positions he has worked for several years at Rabobank in different positions with a focus on the strategic use of IT and on accelerating the digital transformation. He initiated the advanced analytics unit of Rabobank and has contributed to the accelerated discovery and use of big data applications within Rabobank. At the moment, he is a member of  Audit  Management  and, as Chief Auditor, he is responsible for IT and Digital Auditing. He also leads the innovation of the Audit function to a data-driven department.

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