Temporary exhibition of portraits of former Deans

Date of news: 9 May 2022

The university has a long tradition of portraying administrators and prominent professors. With a new building in view and on the recommendation of board secretary Guus van Berkum, the board at that time commissioned these portraits.

These portraits are tangible evidence of the history of our faculty which, in terms of time, has not existed for all that long. The former Deans came from diverse disciplines but fully represented the Faculty of Social Sciences. The most gratifying aspect of this momentum is that, for the first time, all parts of this faculty are housed in one building.

Because the pandemic proved to be such a persistent obstacle, it took until May 2022 before we could show these portraits in public for the first time.

Not all of the former Deans were photographed and not all of them are still alive. Incidentally, the term ‘Dean’ only came into use in 1995; prior to that the position was known as the Chair of the Faculty Board.

Temporary exhibition

We are presenting these portraits together in a temporary exhibition linked to the continuously deferred informal opening in May 2022.

The portraits are located in the green wing of the Maria Montessori Building and hang in a random order. Because of their position as Chair, the three portraits of the former Deans hanging in the living rooms (above the atrium) have a direct relationship with the research institutes now located there.

Speaking of history, the bust of Prof. Theo Rutten can be found on the first floor of the green wing, behind the atrium. Prof. Rutten played an important role in establishing the Faculty of Social Sciences.

The photos for these portraits were taken in 2018 by the photographer Nic Opdam from Malden. The portraits have been rendered in silver print on glass.

Below is a chronological overview of the former Deans throughout the years.

Former Deans

1964-1966   |   Prof. H.J.C.M.G. Ruygers (died in 1989)
Chair: Foundations of social work: cultural philosophy

1967-1968   |   Prof. J. Kremers


Chair: Experimental psychology (1964-1973)

1968-1971   |  Prof. O. Schreuder (died in 2006)
Chair: Sociology

1971-1975   |  Prof. G. Brenninkmeijer (died in 2021)


Chair: Business economics with an interest in ergonomics (1965-1969)
Psychology of labour and business, including ergonomics (1969-1974)
Psychology of labour and orgnaisation (1988-1991)

1975-1978   |  Prof. O. Schreuder (see above)
Chair: see above

1978-1982   |  Prof.J.H.G.I. Giesbers


Chair: Pedagogy and general didactics for teacher training (1972-1978)

1982-1983   |  Prof.C.E.M. Struijker Boudier (died in 2015)
Chair: introduction to philosophical anthropology

1983-1989   |  Prof.O. Schreuder (see above)
Chair: see above

1989-1993   |  Prof.J.M.H. Vossen (died in 2022)


Chair: Comparative and physiological psychology

1993-1997   |  Prof. J.H.G.I. Giesbers
Chair: see above

1997-2003   |  Prof. J.R.M. Gerris


Chair: Family pedagogy (1981/2011)

2003-2007   |  Prof.Ch.M.M. de Weert


Chair: Psychophysics (1991/1996)

2007-2013   |  Prof.H.P.J.M. Dekkers


Chair: Sociology of education/ Educational science, issues concerning accessibility to education (1995/2017)

2013-2017   |  Prof.D.H.J. Wigboldus


Chair: Social Psychology (2005-2017)
Social Cognition (2017-present)