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Prof. Hanneke Takkenberg from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) was presented with the FAME Athena Award during the 108th dies natalis at Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR). This prize is awarded annually to someone who has made an exceptional contribution to the position of women within the university or Erasmus MC

Prof. Takkenberg is the director of RSM’s Erasmus Centre for Women and Organisations (ECWO), which was founded by 2019 FAME Athena Award winner Dianne Bevelander. She also runs the research projectEQUAL4EUROPE within RSM, as part of a European programme that develops and implements Gender Equality Plans (GEPs) in research institutions. 

Stereotypical scientists

Striving for equality of opportunity is a common thread in Prof. Takkenberg’s career. “I can't stand things that are not fair. Women have only been in science for a relatively short time. Universities are male-dominated strongholds. They are hierarchical and very focused on competition and individual performance. It’s difficult to move up the ladder if you do not comply with the image of a stereotypical scientist. Research shows that prejudices usually have a negative impact on women.”

Inclusive environment

The university should be an inclusive and safe environment for everyone, regardless of gender or origin, says Prof. Takkenberg. “Everyone within the university must be able to do justice to themselves and feel heard.” 

About Hanneke Takkenberg

Hanneke Takkenberg is professor of clinical decision-making in cardiothoracic interventions at Erasmus MC, and professor of educational management at RSM. She is co-founder of VENA, the Erasmus MC academic women's network that has existed for over 15 years now. Until 2018 she was chief diversity officer within Erasmus University Rotterdam. In 2018 she won the Els Borst Prize for her commitment to improving healthcare for women, both patients and female doctors.

More information

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top-ranked business schools. 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 can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers.

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Erika Harriford-McLaren, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at


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Hanneke Takkenberg