Dr.ir. F.K. Boersma (Kees)

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+31 20 59 86769
faculteit der sociale wetensch ( afdeling organisatiewetenschappen )
Associate Professor


Monday till Friday


My research interest is in Science and Technology Studies, Organization Studies and Crisis Management.

I am/was teacher in, among others, the courses Organizational Behavior and Technology and Culture, Politics in Organization, Organizational Theory.


  • Organization Sciences (S-OS), part of the international master COM and the national master BCO
  • Organizational Politics (703142), part of the international minor Organization Culture
  • Premaster Thesis  
  • Summer School
  • MSc Thesis (Thesis subjects)


My research addresses the problem of social and organizational crisis and problems of dis-organization. Crisis – like man-made and natural disasters and incidents but also ‘planned’ disruptions such as urban mega-events – upset society, challenge our critical infrastructures, and make taken-for-granted societal patterns visible. They influence and shake all sorts of organizations, change the relationships between people and their socio-material environments, and have profound consequences for organizational work routines, communication patterns and information sharing/collecting practices. At the same time organizations are supposed to ‘fight’ the crisis, be(come) prepared for the unknown, and form collations with other agencies and local communities. The question then is how the crisis situations affect the social and organizational identities of individuals, the work(space) cultures, the actions of (first response) organizations, and the interactions between organizations and society.

I am the project leader of the NWO (The Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research) funded project (2014-2018) on “Enhancing Smart Disaster Governance: Assessing the potential of the net-centric approach.” In the project I work together with the Dutch Safety Regions (Groningen, Noord-Holland-Noord, Utrecht, Rotterdam-Rijnmond), the Netherlands Institute for Safety, DLOC Police, Cordaid, and Oxfam Novib. The research team consists of dr. Julie Ferguson, prof.dr. Peter Groenewegen, prof.dr. Arjen Boin and dr. Bartel van de Walle. Jeroen Wolbers is the project’s postdoc researcher. Two graduate students will be hired in 2014.

We will identify disaster response practices and conditions (national and international) that can lead to net-centric governance. We define netcentric governance as the organization of a response to disasters by making use of self-directed networks of heterogeneous stakeholders, in an environment enabled by shared technological and organizational infrastructure. We will study whether net-centric governance offers an alternative for formal top-down command and control practices, by drawing on the potential of community networks.

I am also the project leader of the Amsterdam Research on Emergency Administration (AREA: http://www.area-vu.nl/EN/index.html). The goal of AREA is to perform multidisciplinary research towards the crisis management domain at several levels (multi-level research). AREA uses several methods, such as participative ethnographic research, survey-research, social psychological research, communication analysis and social network analysis. The research is performed in close collaboration with practitioners. 


Publications (Source: METIS VU)

  • Boersma, F.K., L. Comfort, J. Groenendaal and J. Wolbers (2014). Incident Command Systems: A Dynamic Tension among Goals, Rules and Practice. Introduction to a special issue of the Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 22(1): 1-4.
  • Boersma, F.K., R. van Brakel, C. Fonio and P. Wagenaar (Eds.) (2014). Histories of State Surveillance in Europe and Beyond. London: Routledge.
  • Wolbers, J.J. and F.K. Boersma (2013). The Common Operational Picture As Collective Sensemaking, Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 21(4): 186-199.
  • Boersma, F.K. (2013). Liminal Surveillance. An ethnographic control room study during a local event, Surveillance and Society, 11(1/2): 106-120.
  • Bosse, T., K. Majdanik, F.K. Boersma and K. Ingibergsdóttir (2013). Studying Shared Situation Awareness by Agent-Based Simulation, Web Intelligence (WI) and Intelligent Agent Technologies (IAT), Atlanta, USA, Proceedings of the 2013 IEEE/WIC/ACM International Joint Conference, Volume 2: 201-208.
  • Fuchs, C., F.K. Boersma, A. Albrechtslund and M. Sandoval (eds.) (2011). Internet and Surveillance. London: Routledge.

further information

-          Personal website link:  www.keesboersma.com

Ancillary activities

Coöperatieve Vereniging de Buurtmaatschap - Commissioner Amsterdam, 01 januari 2012
Stichting ZIP/Cybersoek - Chief Executive Officer Amsterdam, 02 december 2013
Last changes Ancillary activities: Amsterdam 27 januari 2017