Jozef Ritzen, a Dutch national, is Professor of International Economics of Science, Technology and Higher Education at Maastricht University, UNU-Merit/Graduate School of Governance. Until February 2011 he served as President of Maastricht University.

He previously held various posts at the World Bank, including Vice President of the Development Economics Department and of the Human Development Network, which advises the institution and its client countries on innovative approaches to improving health, education and social protection.

Prior to coming to the Bank, he was Minister of Education, Culture, and Science of The Netherlands, one of the longest-serving Ministers of Education in the world. During his term, he enacted a series of major reforms throughout the Dutch education system. Mr. Ritzen has also made significant contributions to agencies such as UNESCO and OECD, especially in the field of education and social cohesion. Prior to his appointment as Minister in 1989, Mr. Ritzen held academic appointments with Nijmegen University and Erasmus University in The Netherlands, and the University of California-Berkeley and the Robert M. LaFollette Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the United States.

Mr. Ritzen obtained a master's degree in physics engineering in 1970 from the University of Technology in Delft, and a PhD in economics in 1977 from Erasmus University in Rotterdam. His dissertation on education, economic growth, and income distribution earned him the Winkler Prins prize.

He has written or co-authored eleven books. Many articles written or co-authored by him are published in the fields of education, economics, public finance and development economics.

He became an IZA Policy Fellow in December 2010 and was a Senior Advisor Policy at IZA from February 2011 until September 2017.

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Publications

IZA Discussion Paper No. 10565

Numeracy skills of adults within and across 12 different countries in 2011 are strongly associated with the accumulated public investments in education received by these adults during their schooling. This paper confirms existing evidence that the timing of educational investments is important, with early investments playing the most fundamental role....

IZA Discussion Paper No. 10457

We focus on human capital measured by education outcomes (skills) and establish the relationship between human capital, R&D investments, and productivity across 12 OECD economies and 17 manufacturing and service industries. Much of the recent literature has relied on school attainment rather than on skills. By making use of data...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 8001
completely revised version 'Euroskepticism, Income Inequality and Financial Expectations' published in: B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis and Policy, 16 (2): 539-576

Before the Great Recession, rising income inequality within the European Union member states has been considered to be one driver for an increasing Euroskepticism. Using rich data on attitudes towards European integration from the Eurobarometer (EB) surveys, we revisit the issue by analyzing the relation between macroeconomic indicators, socio-economic background...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6340

A substantial literature claims that the strong increase in inequality over the last decade in countries such as the US would lead to a collapse of society. Fading hopes in the population seem to confirm this. The paper rejects this interpretation since the decline in hopes cannot be traced back...

IZA Policy Paper No. 126

A sustainable EU Immigration Policy aims to contribute to a vibrant European society through more effectively and selectively managed immigration from outside the EU, more attention to integration of immigrants, more rooting out of discrimination, more asylum centres close to areas of conflict, and more attention to education and training...

IZA Policy Paper No. 125

The free movement of people and of workers (intra EU mobility) is one of the corner-stones of the EU. It has overwhelmingly benefitted the citizens of the EU member states both in the countries of work and in the countries of origin. Earlier apprehensions on crowding out of less educated...

IZA Policy Paper No. 121

Europe and the European Union are close in values, in culture and in attitudes. Yet the EU has made little attempt to jointly reinforce the emotional attachment to Europe. Member States stress their differences in national identity through education and language. When the EU made the borderlines between European countries...

IZA Policy Paper No. 120

All explorations of the future of the Euro show serious risks for its survival in the present form. The road map of the Five EU Presidents presented in 2015 is far from sufficient to reduce the risks of the Euro zone falling apart by Brexit type developments or new economic...

IZA Policy Paper No. 112

The decrease in the rule of law and in control of corruption in several EU countries is a threat to the cohesion in the EU. Brexit has reinforced the centrifugal forces in the EU. To counter this threat the EU needs to engage in unpopular measures as they infringe on...

IZA Policy Paper No. 107

The crisis slowed down the implementation of the Lisbon Strategy (for the EU to become the most competitive region in the world). The crisis has aggravated the divergence between the North West of Europe and Southern Europe in labor productivity imparted by the knowledge economy. At the same time, equality...

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