NL-Lab conducts research into Dutch culture and identity. We use innovative research methods to develop new perspectives on various aspects of identity formation in the Netherlands. We are a new research group within the KNAW Humanities Cluster, established in September 2019.

NL-Lab is an experimental lab: we research Dutch culture and identity in the present, past and future. We look for answers to the questions how, where and by whom Dutch culture and identity were formed, felt and transferred. We do not pretend that we can determine what the Dutch identity was or is. We do not calibrate, we taste.

NL-Lab is an innovative lab: we combine old and new methods. We use archival research, discourse analysis and ethnography together with digital and performative methods. For example, we not only employ computer analyses of how we use language, but also create reconstructions of historic spaces, smells and tastes.

NL-Lab is a social lab: we bring people together from different research directions and professions to learn from each other and to jointly conduct research into Dutch culture and identity. In this way we also want to attract and train young researchers.

Read more about what we research and our conclusions.


Cultural history. Cultural economy. Knowledge history. Emotions and senses. Digital humanities
Twitter: @IngerLeemans

Sociolinguistics. (Multilingual) construction of local & social identities. Limburg. Animal languages
Twitter: @leoniecornips

Early modern Dutch culture and politics; History of media & public opinion; Public diplomacy
Twitter: @helmers_h

Knowledge history. Material culture, taste. Performative & digital methods
Twitter: Ms_History

Religion studies. Cultural heritage. Populism. Social media. Ritual and Holidays. Passion for the passion.
Twitter: @ErnstHemel

Dutch Studies. Historical literature. Reception & transmission of literature. Ego documents.

PhD on populism, Islam, social media & politics, Denk & NiDa

Gender studies. History of colonialism. Identity & body. History from gender to gender

Political and cultural history. Parliaments. Petitions. Portraits
Twitter: @JorisOddens

Further reading