Border professor

I was once called a ‘Border Professor’ by a moderator in a public lecture. That kind of summarises what I do indeed. I graduated in Economics at the University of Tilburg, The Netherlands (cum laude). After that, I wrote a dissertation on the relationship between political borders and economics at the same university. In 1998, at the University of Nijmegen, as a postdoc, I co-founded and still coordinate the Nijmegen Centre for Border Research. I hold a professorship in Political Geography and Geopolitics at Radboud University Nijmegen.  I am a co-director of the Radboud University master specialisation on Europe: Borders, Identities and Governance and the master specialisation on Conflicts, Territories, and Identities. In 2023, I will be a part-time Professor at the Department of Innovation Studies, Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, University of Utrecht. I am a member of the editorial boards of the following academic journals: Mobilities, Alternatives: Global, Local, Political, and Annales Scientia Politica.

Recent publications

Recently published books:

Free the map


See here for all published books and here for academic journal articles. 

Current research themes

  • The philosophy of borders: epistemology and (im)morality of borders, processes of b/ordering and othering
  • Global justice: the global inequality of access and freedom of mobility, the unequal power of passports and visas
  • Bordering European, national and regional identity (including the geopolitics, internationalisation of and territorial ‘battle’ in football and other sports),
  • Borders in and of the EU: Geopolitics of the European integration, The external border regime of the EU, migrant deaths at the border (see our Dutch book: Beyond Fortress Europe (”Voorbij Fort Europa”)
  • Designing Borderlands and Borderscapes: The development of cross-border governance and planning of borderlands (see for this, the book: Borderland, 2013),
  • C/Artography: Mapping territories, borders and migration. Freeing the Map: from Atlas to Hermes (see the co-authored blog CompasstoCartopolitics, and see the TEDxLecture: Free the Map
  • Urban geopolitics and planning: glocal borders, urban politics and identity, and geopolitics of capitalism

Current research Projects

  • LIMES: researching and writing on the translation and impact of the Roman LIMES in current day bordering policies and populism
  • Just finished an international book on C/Artography: From Atlas to Hermes (see our blog CompasstoCartopolitics, and see my TEDxLecture: Free the Map)
  • Writing on the cartography of migration and borders, as a follow-up of our prize-winning article on the Migration Map Trap
  • Writing on Paper Borders (the global inequality of the visa-policies) as a follow-up on our article the birth of the paper prison
  • Writing on the auto-immunity of the external border policy and immigration politics (2012-2016 FP 7 Project: Website ‘EUBORDERSCAPES’ and on Facebook)
  • Writing on Redesigning Cross-Border Cooperation (disseminations of our book Borderland)
  • Writing on the Glocal Border Conflict of Cyprus (2012-2016 FP 7 Project Website ‘EUBORDERSCAPES’ and on Facebook)
  • For more research projects and interests, see here

Recent media performances

See for the most recent media performances here. I am a regular commentator (see for an overview here) for various Dutch media, such as the TV programmes Nieuwsuur, EenVandaag and Filosofisch Kwintet, the Radio stations Radio 1 and 5 and the national newspapers Volkskrant, Trouw, NRC, De Groene Amsterdammer, De Gelderlander. In addition, I am a commentator for various international media. I published hundreds of articles and columns (see for an overview here) in national and international newspapers and magazines. I have been a columnist for the Dutch national newspaper, De Groene Amsterdammer (see for his ‘De Groene’ columns here), the Dutch regional newspaper De Gelderlander, and for ‘VOX’, the Radboud University magazine (VOXweb).