Floris van Berckel Smit

Floris van Berckel Smit MSc MA is a PhD student at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU) and the Centre for Higher Education Governance Ghent (CHEGG, Ghent University). He holds a MSc degree in Public Governance (Utrecht University, 2017) and a MA degree in Political History (VU, 2018). Floris incorporates social science insights into historical research. His research focuses on the history of higher education governance, (New Public) Management, the governance of private funding for education, Learning History, and oral history.  

His research is embedded in the research group of Political History of the VU, the research group Governance of School and Education Systems (VU), and the CHEGG. He was a visiting scholar at Ghent University (CHEGG) (2019-2020). Floris participates in various projects in which he collaborates with historians, political scientists, educational scientists, public governance experts, and organizational sociologists. For instance, together with Ab Flipse and Jeroen Huisman he is working on higher education institutional autonomy changes in the twentieth and twenty-first century. In 2020 he received a NWO-grant to conduct research on the rise of New Public Management in Dutch and Flemish university governance.

Research interests

  • University governance from a historical perspective.
  • New Public Management.
  • Governance of private funding for education at the organizational level.
  • Learning History.
  • Oral history.