Marcel H. Van Herpen is a security expert specializing in Russia, Eastern Europe, and the post-Soviet states. He is the author of three books on Putin’s Russia, which were translated in different languages, and is a frequent media contributor - i.a. to Forbes , the National Interest, Project Syndicate, the Moscow Times, and Japan Times. He gave interviews to the New York Times, Financial Times, BBC, International Herald Tribune, UPI, MSNBC, El Mercurio, and Newsweek. Van Herpen is a sought after speaker, who addresses his topics (geopolitics, the ideology of ‘Putinism’, Russia and the West, the information war, the EU-US relationship) in a professional, direct, and clear manner. Never afraid of being provocative he has an inborn ability to connect with his audience. He lectures in English, Dutch, German, and French. 


Marcel H. Van Herpen studied Western Sociology at the Radboud University of Nijmegen (The Netherlands). During his study he was an active member of the students’ movement. He was i.a. chairman of the democratic socialist students union “Politeia”, and co-founder of ABKUN - a committee against professional interdictions (Berufsverbote) in Germany, as well as of the “Themagroep Vakbeweging”, a group which conducted research for the Dutch industry workers union IBNVV.


From 1969-1975 he worked as a research assistant for social and political philosophy at the Sociology Department and from 1975 to 1979 as a researcher at the Political Science Department and the Peace Research Centre of Nijmegen University. His research project led to a book, entitled “Marx and Human Rights – Politics and Ethics from Rousseau to Marx.” (Dutch publication in 1983). In these years he became a regular collaborator of the Dutch weekly ‘De Groene Amsterdammer’, the Dutch equivalent of ‘The New York Review of Books’. From 1979 to 1985 he was director of the international department of the Europe House of the Netherlands and from 1985 to 1992 director European Affairs at the Driekant Foundation, a government sponsored seminar institute. Taking advantage of the opportunities offered by Gorbachev’s perestroika, he initiated the Inter-University Eastern Europe Project, an exchange project for economists of Dutch and Central and Eastern European universities, in which participated the universities of Gdańsk (Poland), Budapest (Hungary), the Lomonosov University of Moscow, and St. Petersburg State University.

Seminars on security

As a security expert he organised many seminars and gave over 200 guest lectures, i.a. for NATO HQ, Brussels, the NATO School (Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany), and West Point Military Academy (New York/USA). He was a long-time member of the BKB, the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Dutch Social Democratic Party, as well as chairman of the Committee for Economic Democracy of the scientific bureau of the Social Democratic Party. He was also a member of the Board of FIME, the International Federation of Europe Houses. Since 1992 he is director of The Cicero Foundation, a pro-EU and pro-Atlantic think tank. (www.cicerofoundation.org). Marcel H. Van Herpen is also a collaborator of the American think tank The National Interest. http://nationalinterest.org/profile/marcel-h-van-herpen .