Opening date for the Center for Economics & Mutuality

March 9, 2020

In the afternoon of Monday the 9th of March, the new 'Center for  Economics and Mutuality' will be officially opened. The Economic Summit will constitute it's Business and Economics arm in the Netherlands and Benelux region, the Erasmus Initiative for the Dynamics of Inclusive Prosperity will become its academic arm while Eppo Bruins (Member of the House of Representatives of the Netherlands) has formed a cross-party group of politicians to form its Governance and Public Policy arm. The Economics of Mutuality demonstrates that when a company invests in its communities, people and environmental ecosystem, while measuring and managing performance with non-financial indicators, the value created is superior - including financial performance. This approach promotes a more reciprocal, environmentally-friendly and financially successful economy. 

Responsible business practices, which benefit individuals, communities and the environment whilst sharing financial capital, are the core of how businesses must operate in the 21st century. The Economics of Mutuality, a management theory developed by Dr. Bruno Roche and his team at Mars Catalyst, has demonstrated the strong possibility to achieve this. Case studies done with more than 30 multinational corporations in collaboration with the Oxford University Business School and Mars Catalyst have shown that business can be transformed from what has become an outmoded model into a means to deliver optimum performance for people, planet and profit. In this way, we can also help prepare business for the 4th industrial digital revolution and explore the implications of this for society at large.

During this opening, Dr. Bruno Roche will be installed as a Visiting Senior Fellow at the Erasmus Initiative for the Dynamics of Inclusive Prosperity as a part of his participation in the Center for Economics and Mutuality.

The center will aim to do research and develop best practices for SME businesses in the Netherlands and the Benelux region in the coming years. The legislative changes required for businesses to operate in this way will also be investigated.

Business and finance are undergoing profound change. Traditional economic models based on scarce financial capital are becoming increasingly irrelevant in a world of abundant financial capital and scarce human, social and natural capital. The consequence of these profound changes is that we operate today with an outdated and sub-optimal system that is undermining the role of business in society. This system contributes to growing inequality, social unrest, and environmental degradation. Today, there is both a duty and an opportunity for business leaders to reflect the changing needs of society and the environment.

The Economics of Mutuality
Economic research done collaboratively by the Mars Catalyst Think Tank and Oxford University’s Said Business School shows that a new concept, the Economics of Mutuality (EoM), has strong potential to help businesses meet these new challenges. EoM, a concept brought forth by Bruno Roche and his colleagues at the Mars Catalyst Think Tank, is based on the principle of the Jubilee in the Bible (Lev. 25). It leverages the principle of mutuality in business as a driver of value creation.

It is a new multiple capital business model that simultaneously promotes sustainable, profitable business and wider benefits in the form of human, social and environmental well-being. It leverages the power of capitalism, encouraging the concentration of the different forms of capital in the hands of multiple stakeholders. As such, it has the potential to adapt better to the disruptive business climates that many entrepreneurs find themselves in than the Financial Capitalism model pioneered by Milton Friedman. Financial Capitalism focusses on only one form of capital - profit - to the exclusion of all of the others. The sharing aspect of the Economics of Mutuality makes it particularly appealing to a new kind of entrepreneur with the sense of broader purpose to bring prosperity to the many rather than just the few. clearly, it is an idea whose time has come.

I’m happy to announce that a new center, the “Center for Economics & Mutuality” will open on Monday, March 9th, 2020 at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. A formal invitation for this meeting will be sent out at the beginning of January 2020. For now however, we’re letting you know so that you can save the date.

Center for Economics and Mutuality (CEM)
The Center will be a collaboration between the Economic Summit (, the Erasmus Initiative for the Dynamics of Inclusive Prosperity ( and the Rotterdam School of Management (RSM), and Government in the person of one of the members of the Dutch Parliament that the Economic Summit has worked with regularly with in the past. The Erasmus Initiative for the Dynamics of Inclusive Prosperity and the RSM have agreed to create a “Visiting Senior Fellowship” position for Bruno Roche. This will help to give the CEM substance.

The Center will be a charitable foundation based at the Dominion Centre in Amsterdam and at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. It will exist for 3-5 years in the first instance. There’s the possibility to extend that time if so desired.
Arleen Westerhof, Founder and Executive Director of the Economic Summit, will be its Director.

The aim of the center will be to promote and to further the application of the Economics of Mutuality principles in business. The Center will organize a “Mutual Business Summit (MBS)” highlighting the advances being made in the research surrounding the Mutuality projects that it funds. Masterclasses for entrepreneurs and CEOs, CFOs as well as “Policy Round Table” meetings will also be organized.

Future role of the Economic Summit
A major difference between the center and the Economic Summit will be that the Center will be secular in nature. It is the intention that the Center be an authoritative voice to all of Dutch society and to other Europeans.

The Economic Summit will continue to exist and will maintain its faith-based profile. In the coming years, we will focus on helping SMEs and start-up businesses to apply EoM principles to their management practice and to integrate them into their business models and accounting.

General information about the official opening
Monday March 9th, 2020, 13.00 - 17.30 hrs.
Erasmus University, Burgermeester Oudlaan 50, 3062 PA Rotterdam, Netherlands
Mail address:
Dominion Centre, Ellermanstraat 30, 1114 AK Amsterdam-Duivendrecht


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12.30 - 13.00 Arrival

13.00 - 14.05 Opening of the Plenary

- Ansgar Richter and Suzan Stoter, Deans of the Rotterdam School of Management and Erasmus School of Law (2 x 7 min)

- Arleen Westerhof, Director, Center for Economics and Mutuality and Founder and Executive Director, Economic Summit (15 min)

- Eppo Bruins, Member of Parliament, Kingdom of the Netherlands (15 min)

- Martin de Jong, Director of Research, Erasmus Initiative for the Dynamics of Inclusive Prosperity, also Presentation commemorating the Senior Fellowship of Bruno Roche (20 min)

14.05 - 15.00 Presentation by Bruno Roche, Chief Economist, Mars Inc. and Leader of the Economics of Mutuality Open Platform: The Economics of Mutuality. Resetting Economic and Business Systems

15:00 - 15:30: Coffee/tea break

15:30 - 16:50: Panel discussion: The Economics of Mutuality. Meeting the challenges of European Business and Society

Panelists: Bart Snels, Member of Parliament of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; Régis Passerieux, Founder of the ‘Refondation’ Movement (France); Marie-Laure Djelic, Dean School of Management and Innovation, Sciences Po (France); Simon Braaksma, Sr. Director, Group Sustainability, Royal Phillips B.V.; Prof. Tineke Lambooij, Professor of Corporate Law, Nyenrode Business University; Gina van der Werf, CEO, First Dutch Innovations

16:50 - 17:00: Close

17:00 - 18:00: Drinks and reception

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