When Wim Drees takes office as the new dean of the Humanities Faculty in January 2015, he is greeted by a number of unpleasant surprises. He learns that his predecessor, Arie de Ruijter, has made highly unusual arrangements with some professors. There is an agreement with emeritus professor Jaap van den Herik, for example, who continues to supervise ongoing PhD trajectories now that he has retired. Van den Herik receives a compensation of 25.000 euros for each successful external PhD candidate he produces, and half that amount for internal PhD candidates. A similar agreement for ‘promotion bonuses’ has been made with Ruben Gowricharn, who served as a non-salaried professor at Tilburg University from 2007 to 2017.
In addition to the agreements made with Van den Herik and Gowricharn, arrangements have been made with three non-salaried professors (about which more below), and arrangements made with professor of social psychology John Rijsman and professor of communication Sheila McNamee attract attention. Rijsman was exempted from professorial tasks in 2000 to focus on the supervision of external PhD candidates, and he supervises several PhD trajectories at the Humanities Faculty when Wim Drees takes office. McNamee was taken on by the faculty as a non-salaried professor in 2012, so that she could commit herself to the supervision of PhDs. Both non-salaried professors do not receive payment. In 2014, Arie de Ruijter did offer Rijsman a compensation of 12.500 for each PhD he produced, but Rijsman declined.