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Personal profile


Timo Korstenbroek is a PhD candidate at the VU’s Department of Sociology. For his PhD, he focuses on addressing the pernicious effects of societal polarisation within the public debate on refugee reception in the Netherlands, whilst aiming to find novel ways to enable what are deemed democratically constructive effects of polarisation (i.e.: creating space for the inclusion of profoundly different views not represented within hegemonic discourses). His research is furthermore affiliated to both the Institute for Societal Resilience’s (ISR) Polarisation Lab and the Refugee Academy. For the latter, he is currently also engaged in the Learning Crossroads project that examines the role of (Dutch) civil society initiatives promoting refugees’ inclusion.


Currently, Timo is engaged in teaching activities in the Research Lab course of the Sociology Masters program where he assists in teaching Qualitative Research Methods (interviewing and coding/analysis).

Prizes and Awards

Winner of the Johannes van der Zouwen Master Thesis Prize (VU FSS, 2017)

Winner of the Dutch Sociological Association (NSV) Master Thesis Award (NSV, 2018)

Honourable mention Internet Thesis Award (Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities, 2018)

Winner of the MSc Best Overall Performance Prize (London School of Economics and Political science, department of Media and Communications, 2018)


Timo holds an MSc in Sociology from VU Amsterdam (graduated cum laude in 2017), and an MSc in Politics and Communication obtained from the London School of Economics and Political science (graduated with distinction as best of his year in 2018).

Ancillary activities

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Netherlands Social Sciences
entrepreneurship Social Sciences
polarization Social Sciences
entrepreneur Social Sciences
refugee Social Sciences
inclusion Social Sciences
resilience Social Sciences
academy Social Sciences

Research Output 2019 2019

Developing the potential for change: Challenging power through social entrepreneurship in the Netherlands

Korstenbroek, T. & Smets, P., 2019, In : Voluntas. 30, 3, p. 475-486

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
theory formation
intrinsic motivation


virtual community
science of society
virtual community
Social Sciences