Four Rotterdam educational institutions join forces to offer innovative art education

Four educational institutions in Rotterdam are joining forces to significantly boost arts education in the Maasstad.
Based at a new cultural campus in Rotterdam-Zuid, the new Hogeschool voor de Kunsten aims to offer study programmes to new generations of students in the arts and sciences. Administrators of Hogeschool Rotterdam/Willem de Kooning Academy, Codarts, Hogeschool voor de Kunsten and Erasmus University signed a declaration of intent today to achieve their ambition.
Willem de Kooning Academie and Codarts working as one on a new cultural campus in Rotterdam-Zuid. The arts institution will be a new entity linked to both Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and the Erasmus University. 
The educational institutions are joining forces with the municipality to develop the so-called Culture & Campus on the Charloisse Hoofd of Maashaven. This new cultural campus will combine education, research, and social initiatives.
The campus itself will be the location for the practice of art, and for artistic and cultural reflection which, on this scale, is not possible anywhere else. In addition, the campus will facilitate encounters, research, education-related social initiatives, and cultural programming that the partners will develop jointly.
“In addition to the bachelor’s and master’s degrees, the new art institute will offer opportunities for joint educational programmes and combinations of study programmes in higher professional education and academic education. In this way, we can serve students even better” adds Wilma Franchimon, President of the Executive Board of Codarts.
“Based on our collaboration in the education and research programme Rotterdam Arts & Sciences Lab – which addresses and redefines social issues with the aid of art and science – we have learned that there is a great need for such a large umbrella educational institution”, says Jeroen Chabot, Dean of the Willem de Kooning Academy.
“Uniting the visual and performing arts, design and academia in the new art institute creates new possible collateral benefits in education and research for all the partners involved, who play a major role in tackling the major challenges facing society, not only here in Rotterdam but also nationally and internationally.” Ed Brinksma, President of the Executive Board of Erasmus University added.

RASL minor ‘Re-imagining Tomorrow through Arts and Sciences’ awarded at Dutch Higher Education Premium

We are proud to announce that the RASL minor ‘Re-imagining Tomorrow through Arts and Sciences’ has been awarded the Dutch Higher Education Premium (and a cheque of no less than 500,000 euros). On the 1st of March 2021, the very first Dutch Higher Education Premium was awarded by the Minister of Education, Culture and Science, Ingrid Van Engelshoven, as part of the annual ComeniusFestival.
The assessment committee expressed admiration for ‘the educational team’s ambition level’, calling the scale at which the RASL minor operates ‘unique in the context of Dutch higher education’.
Re-imagining Tomorrow through Arts and Sciences
RASL, the Rotterdam Arts and Sciences Lab, is a collaboration between Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR), the Willem de Kooning Academy (WdKA) Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and Codarts Rotterdam for joint, cross-disciplinary education and research. RASL’s aim is to arrive at an equal crosspollination between arts and science in order to address and redefine societal issues.
The RASL minor ‘Re-imagining Tomorrow through Arts and Sciences’ is an innovative educational programme in which students redefine a societal issue of their own choosing in a transdisciplinary collaboration. Teams are made up of students from EUR, WdKA, Codarts and other Universities.
The Higher Education Premium committee praised ‘the intensive and inspiring collaboration of the institutes involved’ and especially mentioned ‘the close and committed educational team – with the different backgrounds of its members enriching the team’.
Premium for the development of new Bachelor and Master study programmes
This minor, which started in September 2019, is a good example of how RASL intends to work now and in the future. The generous sum of 500,000 euros will be used for the development of new Bachelor and Master programmes, based on the principles that constitute the RASL minor. In addition, RASL intends to keep developing the minor as a space for experimentation, where new forms of education can be tested and developed. Investment in young educating-researchers is indispensable in doing so.
The Higher Education Premium committee applauds ‘the future ambitions of the RASL team to extend her portfolio to a joint bachelor and master program’.
The Dutch Higher Education Premium
This new Dutch Higher Education Premium was established to endorse the high quality of education at universities and academies and to express appreciation for educational teams that perform at top level. Minister Van Engelshoven: “For 25 years now, we have the Spinoza Premium to honour top level researchers in the Netherlands. For teachers and teams of teachers such a premium was lacking and with it a way of expressing appreciation for their excellent work. This premium should change that.”
RASL Call for Participants
The next RASL minor will start in September 2021 and accepts students from most universities and academies in the Netherlands. But there are other ways to be involved in RASL’s education, as there are currently two open calls:

RASL Summer School 2021
The Rotterdam Arts & Sciences Lab organizes a RASL Summer School from 9 to 18 July 2021. The aim of the Summer School is to further innovate, through transdisciplinary education, with and beyond the arts and the sciences. Would you like to engage with a pressing societal issue in a creative and scientific manner? Then register for the Summer School (see details below).

RASL Students Workshop ‘Transactions’ 2021
This workshop – which will take place on 25 and 26 March—aims to think (and create) through a process of transdisciplinary ‘transactions’. The core aim of this workshop is simple: to produce and share different methods that might improve collaborations that aim to move beyond the confinements of disciplinary borders. The deadline for applying for this workshop is 8 March.
For further information and registration for these two events, please contact There are only a limited number of places available. Please help us by adding ‘RASL Summer School 2021’ or ‘RASL Transactions workshop 2021’ as the subject of your email.
More information
More information about RASL and the minor ‘Re-imagining Tomorrow through Arts and Sciences’ can be found through our website, which also features a video about students’ experiences with the minor. `
You can also follow our social media channels, where you will find video portraits of RASL minor students:

RASL LinkedIn
RASL Instagram
RASL Facebook
RASL Twitter
For additional information, please contact the EUR press office via or call (+31)(0)636495419 (Rateb Abawi) or (+31)(0)640264367 (Meral van Leeuwen), the WdKA press office via WdKA Communication (Carmen de Groot) at (+31)(0)657319933, the Codarts Rotterdam press office via (Karlijn Verschoor) or the RASL press office via (Monse Higareda).
Photos: © Inge Hoogland