VU University Amsterdam

The Department of Spatial Economics at the VU University Amsterdam is engaged in many economic problems in which space plays a prominent role. The department of Spatial Economics offers insights and applications from a multi-disciplinary perspective.

The 60 staff members are involved in both fundamental research, as well as in national and international commissioned research. With this research, the department has gained national and international recognition, as shown by the large number of international publications and awards, the appearance of different staff members as experts in the media and the presence of various section members on the typically Dutch phenomenon of 'Economists Parade'.

Programs and Degrees in Regional Science

 faculty VU   tinbergen institute 

VU Graduate School of Economics and Business

MSc program STREEM: Spatial, Transport and Environmental Economics

  The Tinbergen Institute: graduate school and research institute in economics of Erasmus University Rotterdam, University of Amsterdam and VU University Amsterdam

Thesis on Regional Science in the last five years


Bakens, Jessie – Ph.D. – Economic impacts of immigrants and ethnic diversity on cities

H.L.F. de Groot, R.J.G.M. Florax & P. Mulder

Dimitropoulos, Alexandros – Ph.D. - Low emission vehicles: Consumer demand and fiscal policy

J.N. van Ommeren

Husby, Trond – Ph.D. – Economic impacts of behavioural responses to flood risk - Exloring general equilibrium using micro-level insights

M.W. Hofkes & H.L.F. de Groot

Jacobs-Crisioni, Chris – Ph.D. – Spatial data analyses of urban land use and accessibility

H.J. Scholten & E. Koomen

Kagan, Mark – Ph.D. – Issues in climate change economics: Uncertainty renewable energy innovation and fossil fuel scarcity

C.A.A.M. Withagen & F. van der Ploeg

Mouwen, Arnoud – Ph.D. – The impact of public transport reform: An assessment of deregulation policies

J.N. van Ommeren & C.C. Koopmans

Ryszka, Karolina – Ph.D. - Resource extraction and the green paradox: Accounting for political economy issues and climate policies in a heterogeneous world.

C.A.A.M. Withagen & G.C. van der Meijden

Wang, Zhiling. People on the move: Barriers of culture, networks and language

P. Nijkamp, T. de Graaff & B.R. Chiswick


Caragliu, Andrea – Ph.D. – The economics of proximity: regional growth, beyond geographic proximity

P. Nijkamp & R. Capello

Dijk, Justin – Ph.D. – On the efficiency and effectiveness of policy instruments for the procurement of environmental services

D.P. van Soest & J.H. Ansink

Estrada Porrua, Francisco – Ph.D. – (2015, April 01). A contribution to the study of the economic causes and consequences of climate change: An interdisciplinary approach

R.S.J. Tol, E. Papyrakis & P. Perron

Gheasi, Masood – Ph.D. – Social economic aspects of the diaspora world

P. Nijkamp & P. Rietveld

Gosens, Tom – Ph.D. – The value of recreational areas in urban regions

P. Rietveld & J. Rouwendal

Gubins, Sergejs – Ph.D. –Information technologies and travel

E.T. Verhoef & dr. T. de Graaff

Kobus, Martijn – Ph.D. – Economic studies on public facility use

P. Rietveld & J.N. van Ommeren

Ridderstaat, Jorge – Ph.D. – Studies on determinants of tourism demand dynamics in a small island destination

P. Nijkamp & R.R. Croes

Silva Montalva, Hugo – Ph.D. – Airport pricing policies. Airline conduct, price discrimination, dynamic congestion and network effects

E.T. Verhoef & V.A.C. van den Berg

Vries, Jacob J. de – Ph.D. – Estimation of Alonso's theory of movements for commuting

J.N. van Ommeren & P. Rietveld

Weijde, Harry van der – Ph.D. – The industrial organization of transport markets. modeling, pricing, investment and regulation in rail and road networks

E.T. Verhoef & V.A.C. van den Berg


Gerritse, Michiel – Ph.D. –  Policy competition and the spatial economy

H.L.F. de Groot & E.T. Verhoef

Loon, Ruben van – Ph.D. – Tourism and the economic valuation of cultural heritage

P. Rietveld & J. Rouwendal


Behrens, Christian – Ph.D. – Product differentiation in aviation passenger markets. The impact of demand heterogeneity on competition

E.T. Verhoef, E. Pels & M.G. Lijesen

Duijn, Mark van – Ph.D. – Location choice, cultural heritage and house prices

P. Rietveld & J. Rouwendal

Groot, Stefan – Ph.D. – Agglomeration, globalization and regional labor markets

H.L.F. de Groot & P. Rietveld

Koster, Hans – Ph.D. – The internal structure of cities
P. Rietveld & J.N. van Ommeren

Mohlmann, Jan – Ph.D. – Globalization and productivity

H.L.F. de Groot & P. Rietveld

Ozgen, Ceren – Ph.D. – Impacts of immigration and cultural diversity on innovation and economic growth

P. Nijkamp & H.J. Poot

Peer, Stefanie – Ph.D. – The economics of trip scheduling, travel time variability and traffic information E.T. Verhoef & C.C. Koopmans

Steenbruggen, John – Ph.D. – Road traffic incident management and situational awareness

P. Rietveld, H.J. Scholten & A.J. van der Vlist

Awards in Regional Science in the last ten years

NARSC Graduate-Student-Led Paper Competition

 NARSC prijs klein tcm97-243603

 2011 - Sergej Gubins - Teleworking and Congestion: A Dynamic Bottleneck Analysis, co-authored by Erik Verhoef

 2011 - Hans Koster - Upscale Neighbourhoods: Historic Amenities, Income and Spatial Sorting of Households, co-authored by Jos van Ommeren en Piet Rietveld


2010 - Michiel Gerritse - Commuting and solvable agglomeration

2008 - Eveline van Leeuwen - The Effects of Future Retail Developments on the Local Economy - Combining Micro and Macro Approaches

2000 - Thomas de Graaff - Estimating the Effect of Labor Market Absorption of Ethnic Minorities

1996 - Erik Verhoef - The Implementation of Marginal External Cost Pricing in Road Transport

Regional Science Scholars’ 

Link Staff Department


Henri L.F. de Groot


Frank R. Bruinsma


Eric Koomen


Erik Verhoef


Peter Nijkamp

Jos Van Ommeren


Eric Pels


Jan Rouwendal


Thomas de Graaff


Peter Mulder 


Jasper Dekkers


Paul R. Koster


Eveline van Leeuwen

Koster Hans

Hans Koster

martin adler

Martin Adler

Rixt Bijker 

Rixt Bijker

Christian Behrens

Christian Behrens

Raymond Florax

Raymond Florax

Maureen Lankhuizen

Maureen Lankhuizen

Vasco Diogo

Vasco Diogo

REPEC Ranking

The Department of Spatial Economics at VU University Amsterdam is a world player in the domains of Spatial, Transport and Environmental Economics. REPEC ranks the Department in the top 5% of the world in the following domains: Transport Economics, Tourism Economics, Economic Geography  Environmental Economics, Energy Economics, and Urban and Real Estate economics. For the Transport Economics field it even achieves position 4 worldwide (May 2013).

No less than 7 professors from the Department are ranked by REPEC in the top 5% of Economics authors of the world, namely Peter Nijkamp, Richard Tol, Piet Rietveld, Rick van der Ploeg, Cees Withagen, Erik Verhoef and Henri de Groot.   

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About Us

The Regional Science Association International (RSAI), founded in 1954, is an international community of scholars interested in the regional impacts of national or global processes of economic and social change.

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