Prof. Takkenberg brings decades of research excellence to this new professorship. Since 2012, she has been professor of clinical decision-making in cardio-thoracic interventions at Erasmus University Medical Centre (Erasmus MC), and she will continue in this position three days a week. At Erasmus MC, her current research focuses on prognosis and clinical and shared decision-making in cardiovascular interventions, with special attention to male-female differences.
Award-winning research and societal efforts
At Erasmus MC, Prof. Takkenberg has improved healthcare for women and working conditions for female medical doctors. For that she was recognised with the 2018 Els Borst Award for her scientific and societal efforts. In 2019, she received the Caty Asscher Award for her efforts to achieve gender diversity in the Erasmus MC and Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR). This was through the founding of VENA (2006), the Erasmus MC network for women in academia; her work as chief diversity officer for EUR (2015-2018); and her initiation of the Diversity and Inclusion programme for the Erasmus MC in 2018.
Prof. Takkenberg is currently chair of the Dutch Network for Women Professors (LNVH) board, a network of over 1,300 female professors and associate professors; and is also chief diversity officer at Erasmus MC. She obtained her MD at VU Amsterdam, her MSc in clinical epidemiology at NIHES, and her PhD at EUR (2002). She worked as a research fellow at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles (1994-1996) and subsequently as a research clinician, assistant professor, and associate professor at the Department of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery of Erasmus MC prior to being appointed professor in 2012.
Gender equality on European level
With this exceptional background, Prof. Takkenberg will play a pivotal part in ECWO’s work in not only empowering and connecting women to drive their individual careers forward, but also in achieving gender equality globally through advocacy and world-leading research. A key part of her work will be as part of the Rotterdam team (ECWO, EUR and EUR's Diversity and Inclusion Office) for the recently launched Horizon2020 EQUAL4EUROPE – a research project funded by the European Commission that aims to develop and implement gender equality plans in European universities. She will also continue to facilitate within RSM Executive Education's women in business programmes, and RSM’s MBA, with a focus on gender-balanced leadership.
Prof. Takkenberg’s own research at RSM will broadly focus on network analysis, with a particular focus on women’s organisations as well as personal networks. “We want to add even more value as we move forward,” she says. “ECWO’s aim is to undertake research connected to the education that we give – in particular, focusing on the effectiveness of the networks being created through our educational programmes. Do women get bigger, more effective networks after participating in our courses? Do they advance in their careers? Do they feel happier in their work?”