Ultimately, exorbitant expense claims by executive managers in the higher education sector didn’t turn out to be that big a problem. This is the conclusion of a follow-up investigation at four universities of applied sciences and four research universities by the Inspectorate of Education.


Last autumn, the Inspectorate of Education launched an investigation into expense claims by senior executives in the higher education sector. This was in response to a report by RTL Nieuws, which had sifted through executives’ statements and found a number of questionable claims. Examples include private use of an official vehicle, extravagantly expensive office chairs and high-priced plane tickets.

While the Inspectorate did not uncover any major abuses, it did decide that the claims at eight educational institutions merited further scrutiny. On Friday, Minister Bussemaker forwarded the results of this inquiry to the Dutch House of Representatives: none of the institutions will be ordered to open their books a second time. While errors have been made – particularly in the area of employee remunerations – the Inspectorate can limit itself to an official admonition.

Incidentally, the Chair of the Executive Board of Utrecht University transferred over EUR 16,000 back to the University’s account after the RTL Nieuws broadcast.