Fulbright: Transatlantic Insights on Learning and Society

A project of The Netherland - America Foundation and the Fulbright Center


In 1609 Captain Henry Hudson's legendary voyage took place. In 1949, the first Dutch and American students and scholars received a Fulbright Scholarship to study and carry out research in each other’s country. To celebrate the 400th anniversary of Dutch-American relations and the 60th anniversary of the Fulbright Program in The Netherlands, the Fulbright Center, in close cooperation with the Netherland - America Foundation, will present an innovative and exciting conference - simultaneously in Amsterdam and New York City on September 12, 2009.


Through exploration of the themes below, the Dialogue will consider: What does life in another country and education within its system show us about the country of our birth? How do we experience a fundamentally different way of doing things, and how does it change us?

• Egalitarianism and Possibility
Arguably these two words represent the guiding values of the Dutch and American educational systems. What crucial differences spring from these different values? In an increasingly competitive international environment, what are the advantages and disadvantages of such values? What can we learn from each other?

• Work-Life Balance and Competition
How are these principles affected by the educational experience? Will the global economy push the Netherlands away from a culture that keeps long hours and competition at bay, and toward the rank-obsessed, 24/7 American model? Is that desirable? Is it necessary?

• Internationalism and Multiculturalism
What can the United States learn from The Netherlands about embracing internationalism? What can The Netherlands learn from the United States about embracing multiculturalism?

• Cross-Cultural Exchanges and the Fulbright Program
Do cross-cultural exchange programs, particularly the Fulbright Program, have the impact we would like? Should they be changed in some way?
Expanded? Better funded? Replaced?


Amsterdam: De Waag, Nieuwmarkt, Theatrum Anatomicum. Metro from Central Station, stop Nieuwmarkt.

Saturday September 12, from 2:00 P.M. - 6:00 P.M followed by dinner for all participants and their partner in Restaurant In De Waag.


David Klatell [New York] is Chair of International Studies and Professor of Professional Practice at the Columbia University School of Journalism.

Marc Leijendekker [Amsterdam] is the European editor of NRC Handelsblad in Rotterdam.