Corona Care Package #1 | Presenting the Corona Care Package


Monday’s post: Is our fear more dangerous than the virus itself? (Dutch)

Monday 30 March  |  SG Presents the Corona Care Package

The outbreak of the Corona virus has affected us all. Our thoughts, first and foremost, go out to those who have lost their loved ones and those who are trying to recover from the virus.

Following the most recent restrictions Studium Generale decided to cancel all events until the 1st of June. Our office is closed, but we continue to work from home. Even though our events are cancelled/postponed, we remain committed to our mission: broadening your academic horizon and stimulating critical reflection. We intend to make #stayingin as pleasant as possible by offering content that’s informative, inspiring and thought provoking. So how are we going to do just that?

In the following weeks we will share video’s, blogs, articles and podcasts within four focus areas: Fake News, Mental Health, Arts & Culture and Philosophy.

Mental Health & Wellbeing

On Mondays and Fridays we aim to address Mental Health & Wellbeing in general, and stress and burn out amongst our students in particular. The issues are often study or work related, but the current crisis can also cause anxiety, depression or feelings of loneliness. We do not claim we can solve these problems, but try to do our part, for example by offering free Yoga & Meditation sessions, every Monday and Friday at 12.30 on Instagram (@skycampusnetherlands).

Is our fear is more dangerous than the virus itself? Belgian clinical psychologist Mattias Desmet places the Corona crisis squarely amongst the longstanding mental health issues of our society. Burnout, depression, loneliness, drug use, and our faltering worldview. Check out today’s post, for Dutch readers only alas!

Stay tuned over the coming days and weeks for our daily themed updates. Stay healthy, stay safe and, above all, stay inspired with the SG Corona Care Package! #stayingin

Online Yoga & Meditation

With most of us stuck at home we thought it was high time to get online and breathe some relaxation, positive energy and enthusiasm into people’s living rooms. ? Some of our regular weekly yoga & meditation trainers (all students, staff, and alumni volunteers!) have been working on the following Instagram page:

Through this page we will continue our weekly stress buster Fridays, now also on Mondays, by hosting live yoga and meditation sessions to go within or just help take your mind to other things for a moment. ?‍♂️

Sessions will start at 12.30 and will take around 40 minutes. Follow this brand new page to get updated about the sessions and let’s ‘meet’ and meditate together. Join Sky & SG!

Update Coronavirus

For the latest information regarding the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) we refer you to the official TU Delft website. Government guidelines can be found here.

In navolging van het meest recente advies van het RIVM en kabinet zijn wij genoodzaakt alle programma’s tot juni af te gelasten. Houd de website, de nieuwsbrief en de social media kanalen in de gaten voor de laatste ontwikkelingen.

Following the most recent recommendations of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, we regret to announce that all events until June have been cancelled. Please keep an eye on our website, newsletter and social media for the latest information.

130 of 100 km/u? Hoe hard rijd jij?

“Nederland is in de greep van de stikstofcrisis, of beter gezegd de stikstofneerslagcrisis.”

Vanwege de stikstofuitstoot en –neerslag heeft het Kabinet besloten tussen 6.00 en 19.00 uur de maximumsnelheid van 130 naar 100 km per uur te verlagen. De maatregel gaat op 16 maart aanstaande in. Het beoogde doel is het verminderen van stikstof. Daarbij gaat ook de uitstof van CO2 omlaag. Volgens Bert van Wee nemen de files iets af als we de snelheid verlagen. Kortom, langzamer rijden is beter voor mens en milieu.

In de avond en de nacht mag nog wel 130 kilometer per uur worden gereden waar dat nu ook nog mag. Bert van Wee vindt dit maar vreemd. “Voor de uitstoot van stikstof maakt het niet uit hoe laat het is, maar dat nachtelijke verkeer zorgt voor veel geluidshinder.”

Wat zijn de voor- en nadelen van deze snelheidsverlaging? Denk aan reistijden, verkeersveiligheid, milieueffecten en natuurlijk ook de positie van stikstof. En hoe weeg je die voor- en nadelen onderling af? En wat komt er uit die afweging, is het wel of niet een goed idee om de snelheid te verlagen.

Deze onderwerpen staan centraal in de Van Leeuwenhoeklezing: “100 km/u?” door Bert van Wee, hoogleraar Transportbeleid TU Delft op zondag 22 maart om 11.00 uur in het Science Centre TU Delft, Mijnbouwstraat 120.

Bron: TU Delft Stories (n.d.) Vooral veel voordelen van 100 kilometer op de snelweg. Geraadpleegd op 12 maart 2020.

Who is afraid of the end of life?

Wie is er bang voor het einde van het leven? Waarden over (on)sterfelijkheid onderzoeken en (her)ontwerpen

Als het gaat om het ontwerpen voor het einde van het leven, verschillen de sociale en morele waarden die mensen hebben enorm. Het is belangrijk zicht te krijgen op deze verschillen, omdat technologische ontwikkelingen alleen worden geaccepteerd als ze binnen de morele en sociale waarden van mensen passen. TU Delft Library, Studium Generale, Filmhuis Lumen en verschillende studieverenigingen onderzoeken de meningen en ontrafelen de vragen die rond onsterfelijkheid en sterfelijkheid worden opgeworpen in een multidisciplinair programma in februari en maart 2020.

Voorbereiding op het einde of op de eeuwigheid

Gaat het over het toevoegen van dagen of jaren aan je leven, of over het toevoegen van leven aan je dagen? Kunnen we zelfs voor altijd leven? Het antwoord op de zoektocht van de mensheid naar onsterfelijkheid lijkt door opkomende technologische ontwikkelingen dichterbij dan ooit. We kunnen streven naar onsterfelijkheid, maar omdat ons leven nooit zeker is, moeten we dan toch de dood accepteren? En zo ja, hoe doen we dat? Hoe bereiden we ons daarop voor? In het programma ‘Who is afraid of the end of life? Exploring and (re)designing values on (im)mortality’ onderzoeken we vragen en meningen over dit onderwerp door middel van films, lezingen en tentoonstellingen.

178e TU Delft Dies Natalis: Ontwerp voor waarden

Het programma ‘Who is afraid of the end of life? Exploring and (re)designing values on (im)mortality’ sluit aan bij het Dies Natalis-thema van 2020: ‘Design for Values’. Technologische ontwikkelingen worden alleen geaccepteerd als ze passen binnen de morele en sociale waarden van mensen. Om hierin mismatches te voorkomen, is het van cruciaal belang dat het publieke debat op tijd bij deze ontwikkelingen wordt betrokken.

Het programma

Dit programma is gemaakt met dank aan:

  • Partners: TU Delft Library, Studium Generale, Theater de Veste, Filmhuis Lumen, New Media Center, CUBE design museum en X
  • Betrokken faculteiten: Technische Natuurwetenschappen (TNW), Industrieel Ontwerpen (IO), Werktuigbouwkunde, Maritieme Techniek & Materiaalwetenschappen (3Me).
  • Betrokken onderzoekers: Janna van Grunsven (faculteit TBM, Delft Design for Values Institute), Sanne Kirstemaker (faculteit IO), Lotte Asveld (faculteit TNW), Jan Peter Bergen (faculteit TBM in 2020), Bertus Beaumont (faculteit TNW).
  • Betrokken studieverenigingen: Stylos (Architecture), Hooke (Nanobiology), LIFE (Life Science and Technology), Variscopic (Clinical Technology)
  • Met dank aan het TU Delft End of Life Lab.

BLOG: Who was Frans van Hasselt?

During the Second World War, the occupying forces took the measure that would deeply affect the higher education in the Netherlands. On the 21st of November 1940 it was announced that all Jewish staff would be suspended from their positions. The next day, the President-curator of Delft Technical College, the predecessor of Delft University of Technology, informed the six professors involved. The same afternoon the news about the suspension was buzzing among the students in Delft. In the evening the message was discussed at different student societies. The suspension of the extremely popular law professor A.C. Josephus Jitta made a deep impression among the students. The time at which he taught, on Saturday morning, was unfortunate for many students, but nevertheless his lectures were always crowded. On the 23rd of November  he had planned his last lecture and all students gathered in the building at the Oostplantsoen. However on arrival there was a note on the door that the lecture was cancelled, because Josephus Jitta was not allowed from giving his lecture. Following this, the five board members of the study association Practical Study of the Faculty of Civil Engineering lined up next to each other in the stairwell. The chairman Frans van Hasselt, who at the time was 27 years old, was given a push by his board members and took a step forward to say a few words denouncing the firing of the Jewish professors. He was someone who dared to stand up for his principles. A deafening applause was heard after his speech.  In response to the speech a strike took place on Monday the 25th of November by a group of around 500 students. This was the first public strike against the persecution of Jewish people in the Netherlands. In the summer of 1941 Frans van Hasselt was arrested by the German occupying forces, not because of his speech, but because of his friendship with a friend in the Delft resistance. Van Hasselt died on September 10, 1942 at the Buchenwald Concentration Camp.

Source: “Loyaliteit in verdrukking” by Onno Sinke (2012)

The Van Hasseltlaan and the Van Hasseltplein in Delft, a room in the Auditorium of TU Delft and the yearly Van Hasselt Lecture are named after Frans van Hasselt.

The theme of the yearly Van Hasselt Lecture is related to Ethics, Technology, Peace or Justice. This year the Van Hasselt Lecture was held on Thursday the 21st of November at 8.30 pm in the Old Church of Delft. The keynote speaker was prof.dr. Ingrid Robeyns (Utrecht University).  She talked  about “The Purpose of the University in Democratic Societies”.

Van Hasselt Lecture: The purpose of the university in democratic societies

In the contemporary world, universities are often seen as sites of innovation, problem solving, and human capital formation by educating students. Yet throughout history, many philosophers have argued that the first and most important purpose of the university is a different one – a purpose that is related to its important epistemic role in democracies. Do these historic arguments still apply to universities in the contemporary world? In this lecture, Ingrid Robeyns will argue that these arguments haven’t lost their importance. Moreover, given technological developments and other factors shaping democratic processes, the democratic purpose of universities may well have become even more important than over the last decades. Against this background, what should we think of politicians worldwide who are attacking the universities as epistemic sites? And if we want to protect and foster the democratic purpose of the university, what does this require from the government, businesses and organisations, the university leadership, scholars and scientists, and from its students?

The full Van Hasselt Lecture as delivered by prof. Robeyns can be found here (PDF).

Delta editor Saskia Bonger: Keeping the debate alive

(Shared with kind permission from Delta. Photo: Marjolein van der Veldt)

Editor-in-chief of the Delta Journalistic Platform TU Delft Saskia Bonger was in the auditorium at a debate organised by Studium Generale about the Nashville statement. She wants to explain one aspect: why Delta did not avoid unrest.

Read in Dutch

“TU Delft professor also signed the Nashville declaration,” Delta headlined in January. What followed was a wave of indignation about this token of intolerance toward homosexuality and transgenderism. There were views, calls for positions, demands for dismissal, consultations, personal conversations, a public penance and plans for a better future.

Under all those points I can put a link to a publication by our hand – yes, we wrote a lot – but I will spare you all that. Here and there I notice something suppressed yawning when the subject comes along.

Why am I bothering you now? I want to explain something.

Tuesday evening, May 14, Studium Generale organized a meeting to foster mutual understanding now that the dust of the Nashville declaration has settled. The panel included diversity officer Rinze Benedictus, Cecile Calis of the LGBT+ community of TrueU, and Humanist Association chairman Boris van der Ham. But also, and I find that especially courageous, Nashville professor Marc de Vries himself. After a tip, we were the ones who linked his name to the Nashville statement, but not until we had informed him about it and questioned him.

This publication was preceded by a discussion by our editorial team: do we report on this with all the unrest and possible personal damage that entails? Or do we not write anything because the signature of one person says nothing about TU Delft and therefore has too little weight, and we also do not want to offer a platform for intolerance?

We chose the first option, but what was our rationale?

In my previous editorial, I wrote about the importance of transparency and openness. That is one argument for publication, but too little by itself in this case. We found it significant that De Vries was referred to as professor rather than as a private person. He later said that that had never been his intention, but in his first reaction, he did not mention that. And so we reasoned: a professor is a public figure with an exemplary function, who works with students and colleagues on a daily basis. You can hold someone like that responsible.

And then this professor holds (partly) the Christian Philosophy of Technology chair. If TU Delft really stands for diversity and inclusiveness, as it claims, then texts that instruct Christians to condemn homosexuality and transgenderism do not fit well with that aim at first sight. It would not be surprising if a university at least wanted to make sure that a professor kept such opinions to himself when teaching about Christian Philosophy. Or the university refrains from doing that because everyone can is entitled to their opinion, precisely because diversity (of opinions too) is a core value. It is important to be clear about how that works at TU Delft because in an increasingly diverse community, visions and opinions will often clash.

Finally, if TU Delft really wants its Vision on Integrity to be a ‘living document’ that does not end up in a desk drawer, then we need examples of this kind to serve as a test case in which everyone shows what he is worth in an open discussion. I see it as a task for Delta to provide a stage for that.

Studium Generale has the same concept of tasks, and so it is nice that it keeps the conversation alive. It is courageous that those involved dared to question and contradict each other in the auditorium and that the university in the person of Benedictus also took a vulnerable position and honestly admitted that it does not know all the answers. It is therefore a great pity that so few people wanted to sacrifice their evening to come and listen and join in the conversation. TU Delft deserves more students and staff who find the discussion about diversity and freedom of expression worth conducting.

Do you want to respond? E-mail Saskia at  or visit Delta on their websiteFacebookLinkedIn or Twitter.

BingeWatch Academy: Superhero Science

Do you binge-watch superhero content?
Wonder if superpowers can be real?
Do you want to be a superhero?
It’s time to enrol in BingeWatch Academy: Superhero Science.

Listen to the first Podcast about Superhero Science!

Over the past two decades, superhero stories have increasingly leapt from the pages of comic books to TV and cinema screens. Iconic characters such as the Flash, Daredevil, Wonder Woman, and Iron Man have come to prominence as millions have embraced their inspirational adventures. Innovative storytelling has interwoven the lives of many superheroes to create complex and enthralling, universes.

Unsurprisingly, binge-watching of superhero content is a regular experience as the associated narratives make for compelling viewing. Nevertheless, this superhero content can also facilitate a stimulating platform to explain and discuss complex scientific and technological concepts. Amazingly, binge-watching superhero content could serve as valuable educational resource. And, of course, superheroes are fun!

Motivated by the popularity of the superhero genre and binge-watch culture, a brand new multi-disciplinary talk series BingeWatch Academy: Superhero Science, which is organised by Studium Generale Delft, will take place at the Aula Auditorium on the TU Delft Campus between March and May 2019. Hosted by TU Delft researcher and superhero scientist Barry Fitzgerald, the talk series will address topics such as advanced impenetrable materials, genetic editing, augmented senses, and super-speed.

In addition, a complementary podcast series will also be produced with preview podcast episodes released before each talk and an overview podcast episode with the speakers released after each talk.

Tune in for BingeWatch Academy: Superhero Science!

#BingeWatchAcademy #SuperheroScience

Register here:

Delft in de ban van Europa

Tussen 23 en 26 mei kunnen 300 miljoen Europeanen naar de stembus om een nieuw Europees parlement te kiezen. 2019 is voor de EU het jaar van de waarheid.

Het Europees Parlement in Brussel heeft een sleutelrol bij het instemmen met internationale verdragen en heeft meer controle over de uitvoerende instanties dan nationale parlementen. Reden voor Studium Generale, in nauwe samenwerking met de Gemeente Delft en studentenvereniging AEGEE, om uitgebreid aandacht te besteden aan de komende Europese verkiezingen door middel van o.a. debatten en lezingen, maar ook door middel van een theateroptreden door Lucas de Man met een “Democratische Avond Voor Bijna Iedereen”.

U kunt zelf kiezen bij welk stembureau in Delft u wilt stemmen.



Toegang gratis voor alle activiteiten


SG Podcast #6: Internet der Dingen met Fernando Kuipers

In wat voor toekomst wil jij leven? En wat heeft ze voor ons in petto? Van Droom Naar Daad blikt vooruit en vindt het uit. Middels diepgaande gesprekken met technici, ingenieurs en wetenschappers van de TU Delft verkennen we hun visie op het werk wat ze doen, de technieken die ze ontwikkelen en de dromen die zij hebben voor de toekomst. Hiermee benaderen we de vraag in wat voor toekomst we eigenlijk willen leven.

Fernando A. Kuipers is assistent hoogleraar en hoofd van het Lab on Internet Science van de TU Delft. In deze aflevering spreken we met hem over het Internet der Dingen. Te beluisteren via Spotify , Soundcloud, Stitcher en ITunes.