Prof. dr. Arjan Lejour
Prof. dr. Arjan LejourProfessor of Taxation and Public Finance
“Tax avoidance used to be viewed more laconically”
Arjan Lejour (53) is Mister Tax Haven. He’s fascinated by multinationals that dodge taxes. “It used to be viewed more laconically, but nowadays society has much more of a judgment. Filling up on cheap gasoline just across the border is okay. But Google dodging tax is not okay. Where do we draw the line?” In addition to tax avoidance, Lejour’s research focuses on the economic effects of the burden of taxation on companies. “The tax system is only one of the factors in the business climate. A country’s stability, the level of education, and logistics are also important for a company.”
In March of last year, Tilburg University succeeded in roping him into the position of Professor of Taxation and Public Finance. He combines this with his work as a tax project manager at the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis (CPB). Lejour is no stranger to Tilburg. He obtained his doctorate there in the nineties. “After more than twenty years of policy making at CPB, I felt the need to share my knowledge. To teach students. I like it here. There’s a good research culture here. We share a lot with each other. Not only at work, but also outside of work, during dinners. They’ve got that figured out here.”
He was born in The Hague and grew up in Moerkapelle. In high school, his favorite subject was economics. He was triggered by the book that generations of high school students grew up with, The Core of Economics by Arnold Heertje. “How to make money, that fascinated me. Personally, I don’t care that much for money. If I did, I’d be better off working at a bank.”
He is attached to his token.
“This tiny device gives me the numerical code to browse through an Eldorado of data at Statistics Netherlands (CBS). Indispensable to my research.”
– Peter de Jong (previously published in research special TiSEM – New Scientist)
(foto: Bram Belloni)
On 7 February 2020 Arjan Lejour gave his inaugural address, entitled: 'De last van onbelaste winsten: belastingontwijking in en door Nederland'