Professional travelling

My professional travelling can be divided in missions for the EU-Commission and study trips with my students of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel .

During my first period (1964-1984) in the DGD Transport of EU-Commission my missions were mainly to other Member States of the EU and its neighboring countries. This implied that travel was concentrated mainly to missions within Europe. This changed considerably when I was appointed in DG Development (1985-1991) where I became responsible for Southern Africa. Many trips to the countries of this region (Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland,  Zambia, Zimbabwe) were made. In my second period in DG Transport (1991-1999) I had to travel all over the world (Europe, USA, Australia, South Korea, India, China, West Africa etc.).

The study trips with my students were part of the courses on transport economics and politics. The program of the study trips was organized in such a manner that in the cities we visited there was an official program for 1,5-2 days followed by one free day  for sight-seeing. This was an attractive formula for the students. The first study trip was in 1971 to the USA (New York, Washington, Chicago and Detroit). The second study tour was organized in 1973 in cooperation with the University of Munich. A group of 50 students visited Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto. In 1979 a second study tour to Asia was organized. This time the students went to China and visited Beijing, Tangshan, Shanghai, Nanking and Wuhan. In that period the cultural revolution in China was still in full swing. Other study tours were organized to:

  • 1975 USA and Canada (Washington, New Orleans, Baton Rouge, New York and Montreal)
  • 1977 USSR (Moscow, Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), Minsk and Vilnius)
  • 1978 USA and Canada (Toronto, Vancouver, Seattle, Los Angeles and  Berkely)
  • 1981 Singapore and Australia (Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra)
  • 1984 Brazil (Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Foz d’Iguassu, Santarem, Manaus, Brasilia and Salvador de Bahia) and
  • 1988 Singapore and Indonesia (Medan, Jakarta, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Surabaya, Makassar (Sulawesi) and Bali).