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Honorary doctorate for Mariëtte Hamer at 95th Dies natalis

Published: 10th October 2022 Last updated: 14th November 2022

Tilburg University’s Dies natalis will be celebrated on Thursday, November 17, at 16:00 hrs. This year is special: the university celebrates its 95th anniversary. During the Dies celebration, an honorary doctorate will be presented to Mariëtte Iris Hamer, Government Commissioner on Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence, and former president of the Dutch Social and Economic Council (SER), by honorary supervisor Professor Ton Wilthagen for her contribution to social-economic policy. At present, she is a government commissioner for combating inappropriate behavior and sexual violence. The theme of this academic ceremony is the university’s values of connected, curious, caring and courageous.

The academic session will be opened by Professor Wim van de Donk, Rector Magnificus and President of the Tilburg University Executive Board. The book The Good of the University: Critical Contributions from the Tilburg Young Academy will then be presented to him.

Professor Ton Wilthagen will present an honorary doctorate to Mariëtte Hamer. She receives this honor for special merit throughout her career, that was characterized by serving the public interest, especially in the domain of governance and labor market politics, social-economic policy, education, and development. She has always been committed to progress, emancipation, and connection, also in hard times and difficult cases. She receives the honorary doctorate in particular in recognition of the outstanding way in which she fulfilled her position as president of the Social and Economic Council. Finally, she is greatly appreciated for her thorough knowledge, relying heavily on academic research, her skills and her character, whereby openness and fairness, critical thinking and perseverance go hand in hand with great social commitment. After the presentation of the certificate and cappa, Mariëtte Hamer will then hold a keynote, elaborating on the future of social-economic policy in the Netherlands in all the crises that society, both at home and abroad, is currently faced with.

Vice-Rector Magnificus Professor Jantine Schuit will then discuss the values that our university stands for with Roos Slegers and Henk Witte.

    Mariette Hamer door Manon van der Zwaal

    Photograph by Manon van der Zwaal

    Program of the 2022 Dies natalis

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    Note to editors

    The press are cordially invited to this Dies celebration on Thursday, November 17, at 16:00 hrs. in the Auditorium in Cobbenhagen building. For registration and more information, please contact spokesperson Imre van der Meulen at or phone (+31) (0)13 - 466 2613.

    Eucharist celebration Sunday, November 20

    You are also cordially invited to a solemn Eucharist celebration on the occasion of the 95th Dies Natalis of Tilburg University and the parish celebration of our student church Maranatha, on Sunday, November 20 at 5pm in the student church at Professor Cobbenhagenlaan 19. Pastors: Bishop Everard de Jong and student pastor Michiel Peeters. Afterwards, an informal reception in the meeting room. Registration not required, but preferred, by sending an e-mail to