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Organizing Committee

Current executive committee:

The organization of the International Research Project 2018 is in hands of the following executive committee:

f.l.t.r.: Jorg van Heesch, Saskia Keet, Frank Hoepel, Renate Maresch and Thomas Relou.

Former executive committees:

IRP 2017

f.l.t.r.: Niels Hovens, Tim d’Hondt, Koen Pijnappels, Jef van den Buijs and Sebastiaan Keijsers.

Tim d’Hondt, Chairman
Sebastiaan Keijsers, Financial Manager
Koen Pijnappels, Coordinator Contract Research
Niels Hovens, Coordinator External Relations & Program
Jef van den Buijs, Coordinator Culture, Accommodation & Transportation

IRP 2016

f.l.t.r.: Brian Beckers, Gabrielle van Nes, Kasper Bossink, Vivian Verhaert and Wouter Boersma.

Kasper Bossink, Chairman
Brian Beckers, Financial Manager
Gabrielle van Nes, Coordinator Contract Research
Wouter Boersma, Coordinator External Relations & Program
Vivian Verhaert, Coordinator Culture, Accommodation & Transportation

IRP 2015

f.l.t.r.: Lorenzo Engelen, Isabelle van Wely, Jolan Hulscher, Annicky Reijers and Guy Ariens

Lorenzo Engelen, Chairman
Isabelle van Wely, Financial Manager
Annicky Reijers, Coordinator Contract Research
Guy Ariens, Coordinator External Relations & Program
Jolan Hulscher, Coordinator Culture, Accommodation & Transportation

IRP 2014

f.l.t.r.: Gillis van de Zande, Mirjam Peters, Henk Snepvangers, Pascal Mertens and Bas Zwartelé

Henk Snepvangers, Chairman
Pascal Mertens, Financial Manager
Mirjam Peters, Coordinator Contract Research
Bas Zwartelé, Coordinator External Relations & Program
Gillis van de Zande, Coordinator Culture, Accommodation & Transportation


New Work Future
A Technology Driven Revolution

The fourth industrial revolution is mainly driven by the upcoming robotization and automation of machines. Technology becomes more intelligent and drives companies towards new ways to deal with employment. The changing work environment has its influence on many levels, which will be illustrated as follows.

Digitalisation vs human expertise
First, there is the ongoing discussion about whether it is more likely to automate processes, or to keep investing in human resources. Elements such as expertise, experience, costs and the nature of work play a huge part here.

Labour polarisation
As an effect, there is a growing polarisation on the labour market. Growing income differences, fear of unemployment and underemployment and different market opportunities between high- and low skilled jobs. New jobs are being born while others disappear. For example, there is a growing need for programmers and craftsmen, while jobs like accountant can be taken over by machines more and more. The way companies deal with that is an interesting thing to investigate.

Labour flexibility
Another part of the new work future, is the growing trend of flexibility in many industries. Due to the expanding digital world, employees are no longer stuck to their desk at the office, but they are able to work from home. This trend is caused by the evolution of the internet, growing digitalisation and the ability of companies to innovate. The expectation is that this trend won’t stagnate, due to the improvement of for example virtual reality.

Feminization & Migration
Besides the effects illustrated above, which are mainly technology and digitalisation, there is another more cultural side path of the new work future. Slowly, but significantly, more women make their way to the top of business. Due to differences in the way men and women think and act, this ‘female shift’ causes significant influence on the cultural aspects within companies. This is an important and interesting trend. Besides the feminization, the participation of migrated people in the labour market also has its influence on the way businesses work and cultural aspects within a company.

Behavioural operations management
There are more aspects than the ones illustrated above that has its influence on the future of work.  First, there is the influence of human behaviour on operations management. The way people work influences the optimization processes in many industries. The cause of this is related to Human Performance, the results are related to optimization processes. The research that is done here shows a good collaboration between those research directions

Dark analytics
Big data enables us more and more to quantify theories and complex developments. This can be used to measure human performance as well. For example, cameras can nowadays monitor perfectly how employees work, which can be quantified in order to measure the effectivity of employees.

Based on the above summation of related topics, we expect that we have found a theme that is applicable for both OML, IM, MSE and BIS. Therefore, the range of topics for possible projects is various.


Research Projects

The participants of the IRP conduct research projects for firms. This research will take place in the Netherlands from December 2017 to June 2018. The IRP allows your company to benefit from the expertise of the students of Industrial Engineering. Research projects regarding the theme of this year’s IRP, the New Work Future, can provide the students with more insights into the theme. However, if a company faces any unfulfilled research need in the field of Industrial Engineering, the IRP provides an opportunity to get this need fulfilled. You can download our company brochure here.

For any questions, please send an e-mail to


The International Research Project (IRP) cannot be financially independent. For this reason, we would appeal to companies to support our project in all possible ways. Companies can support the IRP financially, or in kind.

The IRP is an excellent opportunity for companies to get attention from students in the final phase of their study Industrial Engineering. In addition, the members of the IRP and their presence at various workshops, lectures and activities create a wide spread awareness of your company to all students and other companies.

For the above reasons, we would like you to support the IRP and therefore we have different opportunities that we would like to bring to your attention. If you are interested and you would like to support us: please contact or have a look at our brochure here.
Of course, you can always contact us for further questions or comments.

Study Trip

This year the International Research Project will head to Dubai, Shanghai and South Korea (in which we will visit Seoul, Ulsan and Busan). During the study trip, several visits to companies that have a connection to the theme New Work Future will take place. Also several universities will be visited, and a visit to the Dutch Embassy.

The goal of the study trip is to explore and document the applications and possibilities of New Work Future in a corporate and academic environment. By discussing the topic with employees of manufacturing plants, company headquarters, universities, and official country representation offices, we want to gain extensive knowledge on New Work Future.

We are looking for several companies to visit during our study trip. We are looking for companies that have affinity and experience with the theme and are interesting from an industrial engineering perspective. A company visit also gives a good opportunity for sharing knowledge and promoting your company a group of high educated Dutch students. More information regarding a company visit (including several examples of company visits), please have a look at our brochure. 

If you are interested in participating in the IRP by facilitating a company visit, please contact us.


For more information, please contact us:

Regarding research projects, please contact Jorg van Heesch
Regarding financial support, please contact Saskia Keet
Regarding company visits, please contact Renate Maresch

Regarding other matters, please contact us at or visit our office at TU/e Paviljoen U3.


Welcome at the website of the International Research Project 2018!

The International Research Project (IRP) is a study trip combined with internationally oriented research projects for industrial engineering master students at the Eindhoven University of Technology.

This year’s theme is “New Work Future: A technology driven revolution”. The destination will be Dubai, Shanghai and several cities in South-Korea!

The IRP is a research project in which 22 Industrial Engineering students conduct research in the Netherlands, based on a predetermined theme. Afterwards the students will go on a study trip, organized around that same theme. On this study trip, the IRP will visit several companies, universities and a Dutch embassy.

The IRP is organized each year; each year has a different theme and destination. If you’d like to know better what the IRP is about, have a look at the magazine of the IRP 2016, with destination Japan and Singapore and theme Outcome Economy. In here, the research projects as well as the trip itself are discussed.

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.