Dr Peverelli teaches course in Renmin Summer School
Following the successful start of the course Social Dynamics in Entrepreneurship in Renmin University's Summer School programme of 2010, Dr. Peverelli participated with the same course once more this year. The number of students was considerably larger than in 2010, and this time the students were required to find real life entrepreneurs for their assignment. This is still not regular practice in China and therefore attracted the attention of the Renmin Business School (SBE's main partner in China). The entire 3-hour session in which the teams presented their work was recorded on video. For more information see:


Dr Peverelli represents Vrije Universiteit at the Alumni Event in Beijing
During the visit of the mayor of Amsterdam to Beijing, the institutes of higher education in the Amsterdam region have organised an Alumni Event. SBE's Dr. Peverelli was delegated to represent VU Amsterdam during this event, that took place on August 31.

Ms Wang Hongli joins SBE for a year
Ms Wang Hongli, a PhD student of Shanghai Tongji University, has arrived at SBE early September. She will stay here for a year as part of her research concerning open innovation. Her supervisor here is Prof. B. Bossink, however she is eager to get in contact with other SBE members to get acquainted with a variety of paradigms.


Visit from Wuhan University
A delegation from Wuhan University visited VU Amsterdam on September 20. Although this university is not one of the official partner universities of SBE, it is one of the preferred partners of VU Amsterdam on a central level. A number of VU students spend a few months at the beautiful campus of Wuhan University.

China Mission
Dr Peverelli participated in the VU Mission to China headed by Dean Rene Smit November 23 - 27, 2011. During this visit, a number of important contact organisations were visited and an agreement with our university's main partner organisation, Renmin University, was signed.

The Business School of Renmin University is also the main partner of SBE.


Visit by Dr Heather Douglas of RMIT University
Dr Heatehr Douglas, Lecturer at the School of Management of RMIT University, Australia, visited the VCRC on September 10, 2012. Dr. Douglas and Dr. Peverelli exchanged ideas about their current research projects in social entrepreneurship. Dr. Douglas is co-editing a book on Social Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship: Context And Theories. Dr. Peverelli has agreed to contribute to this project with his Chinese partner Dr. Song. VCRC is happy to be a part of a growing international research network in the field of social entrepreneurship.

New researcher joins the Research Centre
We are happy to announce that a new PhD researcher has joined the China Research Centre as per October 1 2012: Mariëtte Kaandorp. Mariëtte will compare the role of social capital in entrepreneurship in The Netherlands and China.

A new Chinese researcher has arrived
Join us in welcoming Ms Ma Yuan to VU Amsterdam. Ms Ma has been granted a scholarship from the China Scholarship Council to do a PhD research related to Chinese Investment in Europe. This is one of the key research theme of the VU China Research Centre, so we are especially pleased with her arrival. We will add more details about her research soon, but will allow her some time to get acquainted with living and working in The Netherlands.


Visit by Prof. Jane Wu of Peking University HSBC Business School
Prof. Jane Wu of Peking University HSBC Business School visited the China Research Centre on September 26, 2011. The purpose of the meeting was to get acquainted with the people and the research scope of the Centre. Prof. Wu had an animated discussion with Prof. Hester van Herk, the Fenna Diemer Lindeboom chair of Cross-Cultural Marketing Research. They have decided to exchange ideas for joint research projects. The PKU campus is located in the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, near the border with Hong Kong SAR. It is a region of great interest for marketing research in China, so we are happy with Prof. Wu's initiative to visit our Centre.

Dr. Peverelli accompanies Theological delegation


VU Amsterdam's Faculty of Theology and the School of Philosophy of Renmin University held a symposium on the Religion and Social Cohesion October 10 - 11, 2012. Dr. Peverelli took part in the organisation of this historic event as internal advisor. The symposium was very successful, and we expect to add a number of research projects in this field to our China Research Centre's activities in the very near future. The photograph shows our visit to the Buddhist Academy of China on October 12, 2012. For more photographs click here.

Dr. Peverelli recruits Chinese PhD candidates


VCRC’s Dr. Peverelli represented VU Amsterdam at the annual PhD Workshop in Beijing for the second time. It is a unique event at which foreign universities get together in the ballroom of the prestigious Hong Kong Macao Centre in Beijing to receive Chinese students from all parts of the country who intend to do get a PhD degree abroad. Unlike last year, we have attempted to introduce candidates to VU professors before the event, and concentrate on getting acquainted with the candidates personally during the Workshop. This strategy seems to have been a good choice. We will keep you informed of the progress.

Funding for dialogue seminars "The future of work, care, and welfare in EUrope and China"
The application of Prof. Anton Hemerijck (FSW/VU) and Prof. YANG Weiguo (Renmin University of China) for the KNAW/NWO China – Netherlands Joint Scientific Thematic Research Programme (JSTP) programme dialogue seminars was successful. The researchers were granted the funding for organizing two dialogue seminars bringing together leading scholars in the field of social policy. During a first seminar in Amsterdam from July 3-5 and a follow-up seminar on the campus of Renmin University of China in Beijing this autumn, the scholars will exchange on the most recent issues and challenges for social policy in the European and Chinese context. The dialogue seminars are planned as step towards establishing a joint research agenda around the theme of "The future of work, care, and welfare in EUrope and China" and involves leading scholars from different universities and research institutes in Europe and China

Prof. Andre van der Braak lectures at Buddhist Monastery in Beijing


Prof. van der Braak, a specialist in Buddhism at the Faculty of Theology, is teaching a course in the Summer School of our partner university Renmin University. On July 20 he gave a lecture at the Longquan Monastery in Beijing. This event is yet another step in the rapid progress VU Amsterdam is making in developing joint research projects in the field of religious studies in China.

URL: of the Chinese item:


Fac. Of Theology receives guests from Renmin School of Philosophy

RenminPhilDel ugust 14, 2013, the Fac. Of Theology received a courtesy visit from three contacts of the Renmin School of Philosophy. The members of the Chinese delegation were:

  • Prof. Liu Dachun, first grade professor philosophy of science;
  • Prof. Hao Lixin, Dean School of Philosophy and Assistant President of Renmin;
  • Dr. Wei Dedong, Associate Professor Sociology of Religion, Vice-Dean School of Philosophy.

The host on the VU side was Prof. André van der Braak, Professor Buddhist Philosophy in Dialogue with other World Views. The Vice-Dean of the Fac. of Theology, Prof. Eddy van der Borght. Both sides discussed the status quo of the ongoing joint projects, in particular the symposium that they will organise at Renmin University during the upcoming VU Mission to China late September 2013. The cordial visit was ended properly with a lunch


Another successful China Mission

A VU Amsterdam China Mission visited Beijing last week, simultaneously with the sister city mission of Amsterdam Municipality. We are listing the main results here:

- Expert meeting on Society and Social Cohesion

During the recent VU Mission to China, the Faculty of Theology and the School of Philosophy of Renmin University held an expert meeting to discuss furthering their cooperation by determining a few specific topics for joint research Please click here to enjoy the lively and accurate report of that day by our student Jill Peters (please do read her other blogs of that visit while you are at it).

- VU lecture for Sino-Dutch science network

On Friday 27th, Senior International Advisor Kees Kouwenaar delivered a lecture on Internationalisation of higher education and research in Europe and in Amsterdam for a group of ca 50 members of the Dutch Sino science network and other interested participants at the Westin Hotel in Beijing. The event was co hosted by the Netherlands Embassy in Beijing. The text of the lecture is available through

- Expert meeting on Entrepreneurship research

Colleagues of the Renmin University School of Business and SBE held an expert meeting on entrepreneurship research during the morning of September 27. The participants introduced their current research projects and discussed possibilities to increase the number of joint research projects. Prof. Liu Jun gave a detailed presentation of Renmin’s Research Center of Corporate Innovation and Competitiveness; Dr. Peverelli introduced his joint research with Dr. Song that is already going strong for more than 6 years and Dr. Elco van Burg gave two introductions, one on research at the Amsterdam Centre for Entrepreneurship and one on his own current research. The morning was concluded by VU Dean René Smit. The event was also attended by PhD students of the Renmin Business School.

- Faculty of Law during the VU Mission

The dean of the Law School of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Mrs. Prof. Van Sliedregt, the Director of the International Business Law (IBL) Master programme, Mr. Dr. Mellenbergh and Mr. Kouwenaar of the International Affairs Office visited several Law Schools located in Beijing (China) from 23 – 27 September 2013. As a result of this visit, new student exchange agreements will be signed with Renmin Law School and Tsinghua University School of Law. An existing student exchange agreement with the Chinese University of Politics and Law (CUPL) will be renewed and agreed on an institutional level (accordingly, all (sub) law faculties of CUPL will be part of this new student exchange agreement). CUPL invited the Law School of VU Amsterdam to participate in the Collaborative Centre for Global Governance and the Rule of Law in Beijing by means of signing a Memorandum of Understanding. This research programme, funded by the Chinese government, matches with the new Governance Institute to be established by VU Amsterdam. The visits were also used to promote our Master programmes, especially the IBL Master programme, as well as the VU Amsterdam summers schools. Moreover, Prof. Van Sliedregt, Mellenbergh and Kouwenaar had meetings with Peking University Law School and Jilin University School of Law to informally discuss our Master programmes and summer schools. Prof. Van Sliedregt will also start cooperation with Tsinghua University School of Law in relation to research regarding international criminal law.

- Academy of Social Sciences

Dr. Peverelli presented a guest lecture in Chinese at the Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) on Social integration theory & the organization theory: Chinese vs. Western organizations. The theoretical framework of Dr. Peverelli proved challenging for many in the audience, which led to inspiring discussions. As a number of faculties of VU Amsterdam now have relationships with various counterparts within CASS, VU Amsterdam will now make an effort to consolidate this relationships on the institutional level in a similar fashion as the relationship with Renmin University has been developed.


- Alumni dinner

The mission ended in accordance with the best of Chinese traditions: a dinner in an old Beijing courtyard: Najia Xiaoguan. We did not eat on our own though, we invited as many VU alumni as we could, and the came. It was the ideal recipe for good chear and a worthy way to end a succcessful mission.Dean Rene Smit gave a short speech.


PhD Workshop 2013

Dr. Peverelli represented VU Amsterdam once more at the 2013 PhD Workshop in Beijing. No need to introduce this event anymore. Suffice it to mention that already 5 interesting candidates from high ranking universities have been linked to supervisors in the fields of business, law and innovation.


Studying in China: four decades ago


Dr. Peverelli published his long-awaited biography about his first year in China as a student in the academic year 1975-76. It is not merely a narrative about what he did and experienced, it is a book that introduces ‘China’ in the most general sense, but through the eyes of a 19-year old European who entered China on Sept. 13, 1975, equipped with a basic knowledge of Mandarin, Chinese history, culture and geography. When he left on July 29, 1976, that knowledge was no longer basic. The book can be ordered from the publisher’s site:

An English site with snippets from a few chapters and an English explanation of the ordering procedure can be found at:

It is also available through Amazon.


Dr. Peverelli participates in Rotterdam seminar

Dr. Peverelli gave a lecture on the ‘Social Embeddedness of Chinese Enterprises’ during a seminar organised by the Chinese Student Association of Erasmus University Rotterdam on January 28, 2914.



Small but beautiful

A mini-delegation of VU Amsterdam visit China late March – early April 2014. The idea was initiated within the Fac. of Economics & Business Administration (SBE) to visit its partner business schools at Renmin University in Beijing and Sun Yat Sen University in Guangzhou. The SBE group consisted of Prof. Tom Elfring, Dr. Sylvia van de Bunt en CRC’s Dr. Peverelli (dual status this time). VU International Office picked this initiative up to inquire among other faculties interested in joining. This resulted in the participation of Prof. Elies van Sliedregt, Dean of the Fac. Kees Kouwenaar of VU IO joined to discuss issues of the Fac. of Social Sciences.

After a few days of fruitful lecturing and discussion with various parties Tom Elfring and Peter Peverelli moved on to Guangzhou, to give lectures at Sun Yat Sen University and discuss possibilities for joint research.

The success of this visit has a dual nature. Apart from the fruitful activities, it shows that it pays off to change a faculty-level visit to a key country like China to a (mini)-institutional one by letting representatives of other faculties join in. This creates a critical mass that will leave a heavier impression on the receiving Chinese parties.



Dr. Peverelli interviewed

CRC’s Dr. Peverelli was interviewed by a Chinese Radio & Television (CRTV) in Amsterdam in the evening of April 13. The occasion for the interview was the publication of his book about his first year in China as a student (1975-176), One Turbulent Year – China 1975. However, the informal discussion also included his current activities at VU Amsterdam and his consulting business, as well as his life of constantly switching between two cultures.

In case you missed it, you can tune in here to the relevant page CRTV’s website to hear the entire interview.

CRTV is part of an initiative on the city of Amsterdam to provide a platform for people of various nationalities residing in the Dutch capital.



Dr. Peverelli lectures at Würzburg

VCRC’s Dr. Peverelli presented a guest lecture at the Julius-Maximilians Universität in Würzburg on May 7, 2014. The lecture was well received and we hope that it marks the beginning of a long-term relationship with the dedicated China team at Würzburg.


VU Earth & Life Sciences receives delegation from Guangxi University

The Dean of Guangxi University, Prof. Zhao Yanlin, visited VU Amsterdam heading a delegation of 6 on October 13, 2014. He was received by Prof. Hans Cornelissen of Earth & Life Sciences, because he has been cooperating with a colleague from Guangxi University for some time. However, the delegation took advantage of this visit to discuss cooperation in other fields as well. VU China Research Centre's Dr. Peverelli expressed interest in initiating contacts in the field of Business Studies. Prof. Zhao and VU's Rector Prof. dr. van der Duyn Schouten signed a memorandum of understanding laying down the intent of both universities to expand contacts and cooperation.



 PhD Workshop 2014

Dr. Peverelli represented VU Amsterdam for the 4th time during the annual PhD Workshop in Bejiing, November 22-23. This time Prof. Henk Overbeek of the Faculty of Social Sciences was also present. They returned with a good portofolio of interesting candidates, who now have to be matched with suitable professors.



Dr Peverelli interviewed about his latest book

VCRC's Dr. Peverelli was interviewed about his book on this year in China as one of the first Dutch exchange students by the site New Books on Education.

Click on the picture to go to the site and listen to the podcast.



VU Amsterdam trains Chinese universities in internationalisation


Mr. Kees Kouwenaar of the VU International Office and Dr. Peter Peverelli of the VU China Research Centre have won a tender from the Dutch Ministry of Education to train a number of Chinese universities in the field of internationalisation of academic research. The first session was held in Beijing, hosted by the Chinese partner organisation National Academy of Education Administration of the Ministry of Education, May 26 – 27. The second session will take place in Amsterdam June 15 – 20. The final session will be held in China again mid October. The final goal of the training is the programme is that the participating universities write a concept programme for the internationalisation of their own university’s academic research. The combination of Kees Kouwenaar’s life-long experience in internationalisation of higher education and Peter Peverelli’s 40-year experience in and with China provides a unique synergy to accomplish this task.



New step in cooperation VU – China

Representatives of VU Amsterdam and main Chinese partner Renmin University have officially presented their joint book Religion and Social Cohesion on July 1, 2015. The ceremony took place in Renmin’s prestigious National Studies Building.

The joint publication is a tangible result of the MOU that VU and Renmin signed in 2011. Theology Dean Wim Janse and Professor of Buddhist Philosophy André van de Braak, accompanied by Academic Director China Peter Peverelli discussed future strategic cooperation between the two universities with Renmin’s Vice-President Hao and Dean of the School of Philosophy Prof. Yao.

 Nieuw: Component


Grand Finale of the training program


Kees Kouwenaar and Peter Peverelli of VU Amsterdam successfully ended the first round of the training program 'Internationalisation of Academic Research' in Dalian, October 21. All participants received their certificate, after having presented their internationalization plans. The Chinese co-organizer was very pleased with the program and had already invited a number of participants for the second round that will take place in 2016 as observers.


Dr. Peverelli joins Amsterdam Research Project

VCRC's Dr. Peverelli has been appointed coordinator for the Amsterdam Research Project (ARP) an annual market research and consulting trip to an emerging market by final-year students of the School. This year China has been selected as the venue for ARP. See our Forum page for more information.


Vrije Universiteit celebrates Chinese New Year

 NY16-1 NY16-2 NY16-3

The International Office (IO) of our university organised a New Year party at the Griffioen Cultural Centre on Feb. 10, 2016. All Chinese students and staff members were invited. During the ceremonial part of the meeting, Head of the IO, Frans Snijders, introduced the status quo of the relations and activities of our university with China in a historic perspective. VCRC’s Peter Peverelli highlighted some of the major academic cooperation programs that held in the previous year. Dean of Dental Faculty Albert Feilzer recollected his personal experiences while travelling in China and discussion cooperation with a large number of Chinese organisations. Prof. Huang Zhisheng of Computer Sciences entertained the participants with a personal interest story about his first trip to Amsterdam. A number of phd candidates and students shared the ups and downs of doing research and studying at Vrije Universiteit. The event ended as it should end: eating, drinking and socialising.


Training Course Internationalisation & Research for Chinese Universities

Seventeen senior members of nine Chinese universities (presidents, vice presidents and directors) are currently following a Training Course on Internationalisation & Research at Chinese universities.

The Training course is designed to assist the Chinese universities as they develop their own institutional Research Internationalisation Strategy & Action Plan – tailored to the context of their institution – with a pilot project to start its implementation.

The course consists of a ground laying Kick-off workshop in Beijing (which was held March 22-25), an Immersion Visit to the Netherlands (May 30 – June 3), and a three-day Final Workshop in China, resulting in the Plan and Pilot project.

As part of the Training course, the participants are provided with a course catalogue and a reading list on various aspects of internationalisation in education and research, as well as with a variety of models and analytical tools to construct their Strategy & Action Plan.

In this years’ run of the Training course, participating universities include the Nanjing Agricultural University, the Kunmin University of Science & Technology and the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS).

The Training Course is implemented by Kees Kouwenaar, who designed the training course, together with Peter Peverelli who helped to tailor the course  to the Chinese context. The course is implemented under the MoU between the Netherlands Ministry of Education, Culture & Science and the Chinese National Academy of Education Administration (NAEA), which also acts as co-organiser  of the course in practical terms.

The Dutch Ministry has contracted the Vrije Universiteit and the two experts to implement the course in two consecutive runs; the first run took place in 2015, with Renmin University and Dalian University of Technology among the participating universities. The Netherlands Embassy in Beijing has been actively supporting the Training course since its original notion in 2014.

The upcoming Immersion Visit (May 30 – June 3) of the 2nd run will consist of a wide variety of case study presentations on various aspects of international research strategy and practice, interlaced with site visits and matchmaking events.

Kees Kouwenaa r is senior advisor international strategy at the Vrije Universiteit and has been working in international education since 1982. His experience with Chinese HE started during his work at Nuffic (1995), includes a project with the Chinese University of Political Science & Law on the process of civil law codification in China (2005-2007), and various activities in/with China for the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam since 2013.

Peter Peverelli is Academic Director China at the VU China Research Centre of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. He holds PhD degrees in Chinese Language & Culture and in Organisational Science. He has been a frequent visitor to China since 1975 – as consultant, researcher and guest lecturer.

Amsterdam Research Project (ARP) conquering China

The ARP is an international research project of the School of Business and Economics at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in collaboration with Aureus, the student association of the School. Each year, a group of skilled, ambitious business students in the final years of their study conduct academic research in emerging markets. The research is entirely financed from paid assignments from companies. This is a part of our Master of Science curriculum for which they obtain credits. ARP 2016 takes place in China, including a field trip from March 25 to May 1. After a successful kick off in Guangzhou, the team is currently in Shanghai and will proceed to Beijing on April 17.

ARP Restaurant

VCRC’s Dr. Peverelli is the course coordinator of the academic side of ARP. This year, his involvement is obviously much deeper than usual, in view of his expertise in this region. As the above photo is showing, he seems to blend in well with the group. However, in each city ARP has engaged students (‘buddies’) from local partner universities of SBE to assist the Dutch students with their work. In this way, ARP also contributes to the relationship between our university and Chinese partners.


The Group is still going strong, so join us in wishing them success (and a lot of fun).

Second Run of Training program again a success

The 2ndRun of the Training in Internationalisation of Academic Research conducted by VCRC’s Dr. Peverelli and Kees Kouwenaar of the International Office has been as successful as the first run last year. This year, 9 Chinese universities participated. A highlight of this year’s program was the participation of the President of the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences Ron Bormans during final session.

Cross-Cultural Human Rights

VCRC’s Dr. Peverelli has become involved in the activities of the Cross-Cultural Human Rights Centre (currently still in the founding stage). This Centre is an initiative of Prof. Tom Zwart from Utrecht University and strives to promote the implementation of human rights by embedding them in local culture and social practice. As China is an important pillar in the efforts of the Centre, hence it asked Dr. Peverelli to participate contributing his more than 40 experience in that region. Dr. Peverelli participated in 3 seminars in 2016:

In Tianjin, Dr. Peverelli was interviewed by


Delegation of Renmin Business School visits SBE

Vice-Dean Ye Kangtao and International Relations Officer Caroline Xu of Renmin University Business School (RBS), the main Chinese partner of VU SBE M&O visited SBE in the morning of December 22, 2016. They were received by VCRC’s Dr. Peverelli and Dr. Sylvia van de Bunt. They discussed several issues related to teaching and research in the field of International Business.

RBS visit


Warm welcome to the Cross Cultural Human Rights Centre


After a considerable period of virtual existence, the CCHRC has found an anchor at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. A critical mass of academics from a broad range of disciplines at VUA has expressed support for the ideas behind the Centre. The VU China Research Centre has also played a crucial role in attracting CCHRC, as witnessed by earlier news items on this page, and we would like to invite our visitors to warmly welcome this valuable addition to our university.

Membership of the Centre is open to individual academics and their associations, universities and think tanks across the world. Ten top academic institutions in China and five leading universities in Africa have already signed up to this initiative.

Zichen Deng awarded best student paper award

he first place prize was awarded in the best paper competition of the Essen Health Conference 2018.

The paper, titled ‘A bit of salt, a trace of life: Long-run impacts of salt iodization in China’ was co-authored by Maarten Lindeboom. Zichen Deng is a PhD candidate in the department of Economics.

For more information visit the SBE site.

8 PhD candidates coming to SBE with CSC scholarships in 2018

No less than eight PhD candidates have won a highly competitive scholarship from the China Scholarship Council to spend their PhD project at the School of Business and Economics (SBE) of VU Amsterdam.

Two candidates will spend their full four-year PhD period at SBE. Two other candidates will be in a joint degree program by VU Amsterdam and their home institution in China, and the remaining four candidates will visit SBE for a twelve-month period to work closely together with the expert faculty of SBE.

The number of PhD candidates with a CSC scholarship is increasing steadily at SBE. This year, the School attracted most of the CSC PhD candidates coming to VU Amsterdam. As of this year, CSC candidates can apply for a PhD position at SBE through our website.

VCRC cooperation with Ernst & Young


Ernst & Young Netherlands has published a report on the experiences of Chinese enterprises in the Netherlands entitled: China Going Global. This report has been composed in cooperation with the VU China Research Centre. We are proud of this accomplishment which marks a big step forward in our relations with the Dutch business world.