Lans Bovenberg#

Short laudatio by Peter Nijkamp#


Professor Lans Bovenberg won the Spinoza prize (the Dutch Nobel prize) in 2003 as the second social scientist in the Netherlands since the Spinoza premia were instituted (in 1994). With this prize he founded Netspar (Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement). Lans Bovenberg is one of the most-cited Dutch economists in the international academic literature. At the same time, he has been the most cited Dutch economist in Dutch language journals aimed at practitioners and policymakers for more than ten years now. He has published extensively in the leading international journals on a wide variety of topics; public economics, tax policy, environmental economics, institutional economics, pensions and aging, international rnacroeconomics and labor economics.

Lans Bovenberg is a great authority in the domain of public finance, in particular the economics of ageing and pensions.

The early work of Bovenberg focussed on tax competition in open economies. Later he contributed on optimal taxes and enviromnental economics. Recently he focuses on population ages and pension economics. ln this area Bovenberg advocates more flexible employment contracts, which would allow employees to combine work with care duties and life-long learning. To keep older workers in the labor force, he suggests to offer them more vacation and shorter working hours. He is the architect of the Dutch Life Course Saving Scheme, which allows workers to save parts of their income to finance longer period of leave. In 2008 Bovenberg was a member of the Commission Labour Participation. The commission advised the Dutch government on how to increase labor force participation in the Netherlands to 80%.

He has published extensively in the international economics literature, and is regarded as a world leading authority in the economics of ageing and pension schemes.

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