Professor Robert Kloosterman

University of Amsterdam

Robert is Professor of Economic Geography and Planning, he is interested in what kind of economic activities take place in contemporary urban environments and how they are related to other aspects such as the institutional framework, the historical legacy in terms of economic orientation and urban morphology, and also to other urban developments, more specifically processes of polarisation of incomes and of insertion of migrants.

Contact Details

Email:[email protected]
Telephone:T: 0205254017

Research Themes

  • Diversity

Biography

Robert Kloosterman is Professor of Economic Geography and Planning at the University of Amsterdam. He is Honorary Professor in the Bartlett School of Planning, University College, London and held the Franqui Chair Entrepreneurship at the Faculty of Business Studies, Hasselt University (Belgium) in 2012.

He is interested in what kind of economic activities take place in contemporary urban environments and how they are related to other aspects such as the institutional framework, the historical legacy in terms of economic orientation and urban morphology, and also to other urban developments, more specifically processes of polarisation of incomes and of insertion of migrants. A key concept in his research is that of embeddedness: the wider social, cultural and political context in which economic activities take place and which partly shapes these activities. This approach enables him to link national institutional structures, inter- and intra-urban patterns as well as individual actors in a meaningful way thereby contributing to a more comprehensive view of urban transformations.

His research has focused on three key issues of urban economies. First, on the level of cities and polycentric urban systems, he has looked at relations and linkages between different cities within one urban region (notably that of the Dutch Randstad). Secondly, he has done research on the development of migrant entrepreneurship in urban environments. For this research, he, together with Joanne van der Leun and Jan Rath, has introduced the concept of mixed embeddedness which explicitly connects the micro level with meso and macro levels of analysis. Thirdly, he has worked on cultural industries, especially architectural design, exploring which relations are key in keeping clusters together. He has published on these topics in various English-language journals.

He has served as an advisor to the Dutch national government, to a number of Dutch cities, and the OECD. He has received research grants from the Dutch Scientific Council NWO, the European Union, the European Science Foundation, the Ministry of Interior Affairs, the Ministry of Social Affairs, the Ministry of Housing, Environment and Physical Planning, the municipalities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences and other organizations. He has been a guest editor of special issues of Regional Studies, Built Environment, Urban Studies and the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies.