Archive Speeches and Photos Opening of the Academic Year

OAY 2017/18

2017/2018

For science to remain the basis for optimism, it needs to find new ways to interact with society. The exploration of these new ways of interaction was the theme of the opening ceremony of the Academic Year 2017-2018. The British author and member of the House of Lords, Matt Ridley, elaborated on the subject in his keynote speech and three Wageningen scientists reflected on the address.

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2016/2017

During the opening of the academic year 2016-2017 Louise O. Fresco and three young Wageningen scientists reflected on the fear of technological innovation and the sources concerns preventing us from adopting new technologies. Economic transformation and environmental management have emerged as global grand challenges. One way to address the challenges is to harness the world’s abundant scientific and technological knowledge to meet specific needs such as sustainably feeding the rising number of megacities. Opposition to and lack of new technologies may hamper such efforts.

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2015/16

The theme of the opening of the Academic Year 2015/2016 of Wageningen UR was 'Disruptive thinking. This year, we invited innovative designer and artist Daan Roosegaarde to show us how his work can inspire Wageningen UR (and vice versa!) to explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life. The programme also included an address by Professor Louise O. Fresco, the new Chair of the Executive Board of Wageningen UR, as well as reactions from representatives of Wageningen University, students and DLO.

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2014/15

The theme of the opening of the Academic Year 2014/2015 of Wageningen UR was 'Adressing our world’s great challenges'. This year, the programme include an adress by Professor Louise O. Fresco, the new Chair of the Executive Board of Wageningen UR, as well as reactions from representatives of Wageningen University, students and DLO. Louise Fresco: "It is time for a new Enlightenment. We must find a new way of engaging society in the development of knowledge". Rector Magnificus Martin Kropff officially opened the academic year 2014-2015.

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2013/14

The theme of the opening of the Academic Year 2013/2014 of Wageningen UR was 'Responsible Growth'. Jason Clay, senior Vice President of the World Wildlife Fund, the Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs Henk Kamp and chairman of the Executive Board of Wageningen UR, Aalt Dijkhuizen, shared their views on increasing the global food production within the carrying capacity of Planet Earth. Special guest at the ceremony was Queen Máxima of The Netherlands. She officially opened the new education building on Wageningen Campus: Orion.

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2012/13

The opening of the academic year of Wageningen UR, on September 3, 2012, was themed 'Future challenges'. Speakers at the opening ceremony of the academic year in Wageningen were Aalt Dijkhuizen - President and Chairman of the Executive Board of Wageningen UR, Ellis Rubinstein, President and CEO New York Academy of Sciences Intermezzo, Loek Hermans, Member of the Senate, Former minister of Education, Frontman of the Dutch horticultural sector and Martin Scholten, Managing Director Animal Sciences Group and IMARES Wageningen UR.

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2011/12

Speakers of the opening of the academic year of Wageningen 2011 on 5 September 2011 were Maxime Verhagen, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation, Bernard Wientjes, President of the Confederation of Industry and Employers VNO-NCW and Ruud Huirne, Managing Director of the Social Sciences Group of Wageningen UR. The speakers addressed ‘The Golden Triangle’, the theme of the opening this year.

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2010/11

The opening of the academic year of Wageningen UR, on September 6, 2010, was themed 'Nature as the basis'. Speakers at the opening ceremony of the academic year in Wageningen were Alexander Pechtold (political party leader of D66), Kees Slingerland (managing director of the Environmental Sciences Group of Wageningen UR) and Aalt Dijkhuizen (chairman of the executive board of Wageningen UR).

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2009/10

The theme of the Opening ceremony of the Academic Year in Wageningen on September 7th 2009 was 'Innovation in economically difficult times'.
Mrs Marion Guillou, President of INRA, focused on the international aspects, while Mr Theo Meijer, Chairman of Food Valley, addressed the collaboration among the government, private industry and knowledge institutes in the Food Valley.

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2008/09

The Opening of the Academic Year 2008-2009 in Wageningen on 1 September focused on the theme ‘Feeding the World’. Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan was keynote speaker at the Opening of the Academic Year in Wageningen. The Opening took place in Junushoff in Wageningen. A preliminary symposium about innovations and developments in animal production was held in Conference Centre WICC in Wageningen.

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2007/08

The Opening of the Academic Year of Wageningen University and of the Study Year of Van Hall Larenstein, university of professional education, took place on 4 September 2007, with the theme 'Building our future, for quality of life'. Wageningen Campus and its new Forum building were officially opened by H.M. the Queen.

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