Inspiration Days

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The EFR Inspiration Days is one of the most prestigious events organised by students in Europe. We aspire to be the most innovative, society-aligned event that interactively connects and inspires students from all faculties. To meet our goal, we host an interactive congress, a breakout session and discussions. We proudly announce the theme of the EFR Inspiration Days 2020: power of performance.  

Are you ready for the power of performance? Whether you are in your first, second, third year or masters, it is never too early nor too late to get inspired. During this day you will be inspired by leaders such as Donald Tusk, Peer Swinkels and Pieter Elbers.

This event is the sucessor of the well-known EFR World of Business congress.

For any questions please contact us: 



  • icon of Creativity


    The use of imagination or original ideas to create something. Marc Bras (Head of BMWi the Netherlands) and Erik Schoppen (neuroscientist) will be giving a Breakout Session about Creativity.
  • icon of Perseverance


    Persistence in doing something to achieve succes, despite difficulties or delays. Katja Staartjes (athlete and mountain climbster) and Lisa Kruger (Paralympic swimmer) will be giving a Breakout Session about Perseverance.
  • icon of Leadership


    The action of leading a group of people or an organization. Milou de Graaf (Lead Managers and Starters Development at CoolBlue) and Roelien Ritsema van Eck (member of Executive Board EUR) will be giving a Breakout Session about Leadership.


  • Donald Tusk

    Donald Tusk was till December 2019 the president of the European Council. Donald Tusk will be the keynote speaker.
    Donald Tusk is a Polish politician, who was the president of the European Council from 2014 to 2019. He served as the prime minister of Poland from 2007 to 2014 and was a co-founder and chairman of the Civic Platform political party. On 20 November 2019, Tusk was elected as the president of the European People's Party (EPP).
  • Peer Swinkels

    CEO of Swinkels Family Brewers. He will take part in the panel discussion during the closing.
    As the Chief Executive Officer of the managing board in 2019, he is leading Swinkels Family Brewing which is well-known for its different beers. This family business has build a worldwide imperium with their product.
  • Pieter Elbers

    President of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. He will take part in the panel discussion during the closing.
    As the Chief Executive Officer of the managing board in 2014, he is leading KLM and its 33,000 employees through an intensive transformation. The current network of KLM connects the Netherlands with the world and the world with the Netherlands.
  • Carolien Gehrels

    Carolien Gehrels is European Cities Director Arcadis. She will take part in the panel discussion during the closing.
    She has notably held consultant positions at Berenschot, including as Marketing Director in the breakthrough « I Amsterdam » city marketing campaign. Carolien was Alderman and Vice Mayor for the city of Amsterdam. Since 2014 she has been Arcadis’ European Cities Director and City Executive Amsterdam/Rotterdam. Carolien holds numerous board positions, including member of the Supervisory Board of the Technical University of Delft, member of the Board of Worldwaternet, Amsterdam, member of the Council for the creative industries, member of the Council of the Platform Urban Renewal, chair of the Platform for Music Education on Primary Schools (of which Queen Maxima is Honorary Chair) and member of the Supervisory board of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
  • Peter Stas

    President of the Executive Board Frederique Constant Group. Co-Founder and Chief Strategy MMT. He will take part in the panel discussion during the closing.
    Drs. Peter Stas is a Dutch entrepreneur and author. He completed his studies in Business Economics at the Erasmus University and Harvard University. In 1988, he founded, with his wife Aletta Stas-Bax, the luxury wristwatch company Frédérique Constant.
  • Roelof Hemmen

    Presenter of BNR Nieuwsradio and former newsanchor at RTL Nieuws. He will host the closing.
    Roelof Hemmen is a journalist since 1984. He started as an apprentice at De Haagsche Courant and worked for De Telegraaf. Later he became a (political) reporter at RTL Nieuws where he end ip being the newsanchor.
  • Lisa Kruger

    Paralympic athlete, World and European Champion, swimming. She will give a breakout session on perseverance.
    When she was 6 years old she broke her left wrist while she was playing outside with a friend. Her wrist never fully recovered from the fall and left her with a nearly non-functional lower arm. She started swimming back in 2011 and started Para-Swimming in 2012, when she found out she was “disabled enough” to qualify as a Para-Swimmer. She became Paralympic Champion in 2016 and World Champion in 2019, training 27 hours a week.
  • Katja Staartjes

    Katja Staartjes was the first Dutch woman to climb Mount Everest. She will give a break out session about perseverance.
    Katja Staartjes was the first Dutch woman to climb Mount Everest, she competed the Great Himalaya Trail of 2000 kilometres and leaded several Himalaya expeditions. She inspires organisations as a keynote speaker and draws parallels between mountain-climbing and the challenges in daily life concerncing leadership, teamwork and agility. In the past Katja studied food technology and has fulfilled different senior management roles. Currently she also works as a trainer and coach. She is the author of four books.
  • Milou de Graaf

    Milou de Graaf is Leader of Managers & Starters Development. She will be part of the breakout session about leadership.
    "Milou worked for a Finnish company and traveled on a weekly base, while managing 7 teams spread over Europe. During these years, she discovered her passion for leadership development, and was hired by Coolblue to set up a new role. Currently she is building her own team.
  • Marc Bras

    Head of BMWi, Mobility and Digital Services Netherlands. He will give a breakout session on creativity.
    Marc Bras is an entrepreneurial leader, a result oriented creative thinker and team enabler. He has a strong focus on maximizing individuals into creative teams to achieve short term results. Bras defines long term strategies and is involved in the relating change and innovation.
  • Erik Schoppen

    Expert in trust, neuroscience and behaviour. He will give a breakout session on creativity.
    Erik Schoppen is as a PhD candidate, a widely asked speaker about brain, brand, behaviour, trust and leadership. In his lectures on the human brain and our behaviour, he shows how to build trust and deploy trust from a social, economical and sustainable perspective.
  • lunch round table discussion

    The day starts with the 'lunch round table discussion' in which 20 entrepreneurs and executives get the chance to discuss topical issues with 80 highly motivated students. During this lunch there will be ten tables each filled with eight students and two entrepreneurs.
    Entrepeneurs attending:Michel Willems (co-founder van BimBimBikes), Hans van Ierland (partner & co-founder HPE Growth Capital), Vincent Karremans (founder & CEO van, Tonko Gast (founder & CEO van Dynamic Credit), Martijn van Rooy (founder & CEO van Parfumado), Michiel Schipperus (CEO van Sana Commerce), Terry Afram (Managing Director van Bridge Consulting), Dyllan Ahinful (co-founder van L'ORIGINE), Suzanne Knegt (founder van RotterTram) Marieke Pijler (founder van Brand Density), Nan Su (director van Dutch Sino), Damer Perkic (founder & CEO van BE O Bottle), Danique Wiltink (founder & CEO van BABOON Amsterdam), Arthur Nederlof (founder & CEO van VANAD Group), Merijn Everaarts (founder & CEO van Dopper), Corne Melissen (partner bij Ramphastos), Thomas van der Lubbe (founder & CEO van PostMasters), Bob Jansen (co-founder & CEO van Firmhouse), Tony-Wim van Eijden (founder van 2Foods, Schipperus-Benjamins and Tony-Wim van Eijden.
  • Lunch round table discussion

    Pompgebouw de Esch

  • Plenary opening session


  • Breakout session

    CB-2, CB-3, CB-4

  • Innovation playground


  • Plenary closing session


  • Closing drink


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EFR wall of fame

EFR strives to inspire students. We do this by inviting all sorts of speakers to our events, ranging from worldwide political leaders to captains of industries. These people have been invited to events like the World of Business congres and EFR/EenVandaag election debate, see here our wall of fame.

  • Jeroen Dijsselbloem

    Jeroen Dijsselbloem is a Dutch politician and economist. Former Minister of Finance and President of the Eurogroup.
    He is a member of the Labour Party (PvdA), he has also been Chairman of the supervisory board of Wageningen University since 1 April 2019.
  • Pim Fortuyn

    Pim Fortuyn was a Dutch politician, academic, author and businessman who formed his own party: the Pim Fortuyn List.
    Fortuyn prompted controversy in the Netherlands with his views on multiculturalism, immigration and Islam in the Netherlands. He called Islam "a backward culture", and was quoted as saying that if it were legally possible, he would close the borders for Muslim immigrants.
  • Mikhail Gorbachev

    Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is the former President of the Soviet Union and Nobel Peace Prize winner.
    He is a Russian and formerly Soviet politician. Mikhail was the eighth and last leader of the Soviet Union and the general secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Ideologically, he initially adhered to Marxism-Leninism although by the early 1990s had moved toward social democracy.
  • Ban Ki-moon

    Ban Ki-moon is a South-Korean diplomat and politician. Former Secretary-General of the United Nations.
    He is a South Korean politician and diplomat who served as the eighth Secretary-General of the United Nations from January 2007 to December 2016. Before becoming Secretary-General, Ban was a career diplomat in South Korea's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and in the United Nations. He entered diplomatic service the year he graduated from university, accepting his first post in New Delhi, India.
  • Neelie Kroes

    Neelie Kroes is a former Dutch politician and European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda.
    Neelie Kroes is a retired Dutch politician of the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) and businesswoman In 2007 Neelie Kroes became 59th on the Forbes-lijst The 100 Most Powerful Women, one year later she became 47th.
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Each year EFR organises multiple events. Below you can find an overview of the biggest events.

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