The United Nations University (UNU) announced on Friday that Prof. Dr. Bart Verspagen of the Netherlands has been appointed as the next Director of the UNU Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (UNU-MERIT). Director-Designate Verspagen will take up the post on 1 September 2012.
UNU-MERIT explores the social, political and economic factors that drive technological innovation, with a particular focus on creation, diffusion and access to knowledge. Following the integration of the Maastricht Graduate School of Governance (in December 2010), the Institute functions as a unique research institution and graduate school covering all aspects of governance in domestic and global organizations, and as a UN think tank addressing a broad range of policy questions on science, innovation and democratic governance.
Prof. Verspagen will succeed Prof. Dr. Luc Soete, founding Director of the Institute. Having served in that post since 1988, Prof. Soete is leaving UNU to become Rector Magnificus of Maastricht University.
An economist specializing in the economics of technological change, Prof. Verspagen holds a PhD degree from Maastricht University. He previously worked at the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences, Eindhoven University of Technology, and the University of Oslo. In 2008 he joined Maastricht University as Professor of International Economics, and has concurrently been serving as a Professorial Fellow with UNU-MERIT.
For further information, see the attached UNU press release.