Your Global Future

This course consists of six sessions which aim to deploy your human capital in a more entrepreneurial way and leverage your international experience and connections as a newcomer.

The academic perspective offers room for reflection on one’s personal qualities and how to find synergy between those qualities and the development of new (labour market) opportunities.

Course providers: Utrecht University and University of Applied Sciences Utrecht.

Target Audience: Newcomers with higher levels of education (bachelor level plus) and sufficient command of English.

Registration link: Use this link to register (optimized for mobile devices)


Dr. Hein Roelfsema is associate professor of international entrepreneurship at Utrecht University.

Dr. Leendert de Bell is professor of sustainable labor participation of refugees at University of Applied Sciences Utrecht and academic staff member at Utrecht University Centre for Entrepreneurship.

Christian de Kraker, MA. is PhD student in entrepreneurial journeys of refugees and their ecosystems at Groningen University.

Guest speakers: Most sessions will feature a guest speaker with specific knowledge and experience on the topic of that session.

Location: Huis van Vrede, Trumanlaan 70, Utrecht (subject to last minute changes due to COVID-19 measures).

Start date: Due to COVID measures, the course will resume in January 2021

Certificate: A certificate will be provided to participants who attend and actively participate in a minimum of 4 sessions.


Session 1: Tuesday, January 12, 2021 (14.00-17.00) Dr. Hein Roelfsema

The Dutch entrepreneurial business culture and international orientation
This first session focuses on the Dutch corporate culture and what this means for the entrepreneurial capacities needed to succeed in international business. After a plenary lecture, groups will discuss to what extent cultural differences are important in connecting to the international labour market and what role entrepreneurship and innovation play in this.

Session 2: Thursday, January 14, 2021 (14.00-17.00) Dr. Hein Roelfsema

Working in a knowledge based entrepreneurial society
This session will focus on the knowledge skills needed to succeed in European business, with a focus on entrepreneurship and innovation skills. In addition, it is important to have a good cultural understanding of diversity and to work in teams and what this means in a European context. After a brief introductory lecture, work will be done in a number of working formats that highlight the key characteristics of entrepreneurship and innovation in a diverse environment.

Session 3: Tuesday, January 19, 2021 (14.00-17.00) Dr. Leendert de Bell

Finding appropriate employment in new labour markets
What are possibilities to find high-quality employment in the Netherlands and Europe and how can you increase your chances on the labour market? In this session, we will discuss how the labour market works for highly educated people and how you can approach employers. In addition, this session will provide insight into how you can expand capacities gained in the country of origin, but above all, how you can show them as necessary on the Dutch and European labour market. It will also discuss to what extent you can discover a gap in capacities and how you can fill these gaps.

Session 4: Thursday, January 21, 2021 (14.00-17.00) Christian de Kraker, MA

Creating networks and opportunities
For newcomers, it is important, after a period of civic integration, to build up social networks that make it possible to make a contribution and find work that matches their level of education. In addition, it is important for newcomers to link their international social capital to a new environment and in this way form a connection between the new environment in the Netherlands and Northern Europe on the one hand and the social capital in the countries of origin on the other hand. Such a multicultural attitude can strengthen the chances on the labour market for entry but also for continued growth. In this session, strategies for building up social capital in Europe and the Netherlands will be discussed and opportunities for strengthening social capital will be explored.

Session 5: Tuesday, January 26, 2021 (14.00-17.00) Dr. Leendert de Bell

Should I stay or should I go?
Recent data for the Netherlands show that only about half of the newcomers eventually stay in the Netherlands. A large part migrates further across the world and perhaps a small portion returns to the region and maybe even the country of origin. In addition, there is a substantial group that will not be able to find a permanent residence in the Netherlands and will need to find a strategy to deal with this. In this session we go deeper into experiences, wishes and possibilities for a long-term perspective outside the Netherlands.

Session 6: Thursday, January 28, 2021 (14.00-17.00) Christian de Kraker, MA

Supporting people left behind: What does that mean for you?

Newcomers often have the opportunity to support people that have not been able how to escape disadvantaged positions in the home country. In most cases, helping means using remittances to support income. However, new connections and opportunities in Europe may also create innovative ways and entrepreneurial ways to support people left behind. In this session we will discuss best practices on how to do this and share experiences. Also, the session provides some practical tips and do’s and don'ts on how to organise support for people left behind.