Launch of RSM Reputation Research Centre at international conference

A conference to celebrate 25 years of the Corporate Communications Centre at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) was the occasion for the launch of a specialist research centre. The announcement about the launch of the Reputation Research Centre (RRC) was made at the Past and Future of Reputation Management conference at RSM in Rotterdam on Friday, 26 September 2014.

The Reputation Research Centre will be launched next month and hosted by RSM. What’s more, it was announced at the conference that it will benefit from a donation of US$ 400,000 (just over €300,000) from the Reputation Institute management consultancy, said its chairman Professor Charles Fombrun.

The mission of this new research centre is to elaborate on insights in reputation management coming from fundamental academic research by the world’s top researchers. RRC will invite top researchers from the global business school community to participate in teams to do research on reputation management. This initiative will be headed by Professor Cees van Riel, Professor of Corporate Communication at RSM.  

The RRC has been made possible by funds generously provided by the Reputation Institute and RSM’s Corporate Communication Centre, which is a joint initiative by RSM and the business community to develop and expand knowledge of corporate communication. It is the longest established research centre at RSM.

In addition to its generous donation, the Reputation Institute’s Board has also provided some limited access to the Institute’s proprietary RepTrak® databases for researchers affiliated to the RRC.  The RRC will also benefit from a transfer of research expertise from Corporate Communication Centre.

Scholarships and research positions

Launch date for the RRC is October 2014, and it will offer scholarships to post-doctoral candidates and other young researchers with proven track records in fundamental reputation research. Some will be invited to work at RSM for a short period of time. Others will be involved in projects in a more ‘virtual’ way.

The RRC anticipates working with some of the world’s top companies, especially those that are keen to involve themselves in research projects.

New ideas for communication managers

All of the research output from the RRC will be made publically available at no cost to other researchers and interested parties; the centre is also aiming to publish in academic journals and via other academic outlets. 

CCC director and chair of the RRC Professor Cees van Riel said: “Launching the RRC will enhance the possibility of joining forces with the global academic community of top researchers. Our output will be highly relevant for practitioners; no doubt RRC will be the source of new ideas for communication managers in the business world. I am proud to be the first chairman of the RRC Board and look forward to making this a great success.”

Authentic reputation management strategy

RSM Dean, Professor Steef van de Velde said: “This new research centre is a recognition for the excellent academic research done in the area of corporate communication in the last 25 years at our school. The business world is faced with many challenges that demand an effective and, above all, authentic reputation management strategy. I am proud to see that we can offer this to the academic community and to the business world.  Of course, I am very grateful to the Reputation Institute for their generous support for our new research platform.”


Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is ranked among Europe’s top 10 business schools for education and among the top three for research. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam - a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who carry their innovative mindset into a sustainable future thanks to a first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes. RSM also has offices in the Amsterdam Zuidas business district and in Taipei, Taiwan.

For more information on RSM or on this release, please contact Marianne Schouten, Media & Public Relations Manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at

Alumni, Business-Society Management, Corporate Communication Centre, Companies, Executive education, Faculty & Research, Homepage, International, Newsroom, Master, MBA