Sibrand Poppema, the former president of the University of Groningen, received the Groningen Badge of Honour from mayor Peter den Oudsten on Thursday.
Translation by Traci White
The badge was presented to Poppema, who led the University of Groningen for the past ten years, during a farewell symposium at the Martini Church on Thursday afternoon.
In remarks about the outgoing university president, mayor Den Oudsten said that Poppema had earned the badge for the hard work he has done over the years to strengthen Groningen’s position. Den Oudsten also praised Poppema’s effort to improve relations and collaboration between Groningen, the wider northern Netherlands region and northern Germany.
The Groninger Internet Courant reports that in addition to his work as the president of the University of Groningen, Poppema was also involved in the steering group for the Accord of Groningen. Under Poppema’s leadership, the university focused on three research themes: Healthy Ageing, Sustainable Society and Energy. Poppema’s plans to open a branch campus in the Chinse city of Yantai failed to become a reality, blemishing his decade-long tenure.
The badge of honour for the city of Groningen is awarded to prominent members of society for various civic achievements and sterling work in their field. The badge was developed by then-mayor Cort van der Linden in 1940. Other recipeients of the badge include Nobel Prize winning chemistry professor Ben Feringa, the KEI Week, alderperson Roeland van der Schaaf and VERA artistic director Peter Weening.