"I think I am an applied philosopher, rather than a philosopher as such.
"It was Richard Russell who first introduced me to Dooyeweerd. I was at a seminar on Christians in Politics, since I had felt the Lord calling me to stand as parliamentary candidate for the Green Party. The speaker asked for book recommendations. I offered 'Thine is the Kingdom' by Paul Marshall, which was the book the Lord used me to issue that call. From the back of the room, Richard piped up, "They've remaindered the book and I've got all the copies" (on the Christian Studies Unit bookstall). Afterwards he took me for coffee and asked me if I knew what was behind Paul Marshall's book: a philosopher called Herman Dooyeweerd.
"Richard introduced me to Dooyeweerd's aspects. Immediately, I realised they could help me solve a conundrum that had troubled me: why all the various factions in the Green Party? I saw: each faction was emphasising one aspect. And we could define "sustainability" as good functioning in every aspect.
"At the same time, I saw that the very same set of aspects could help us understand benefits or harm from information technology. (Hence my recent post on Facebook harm! "http://dooy.info/using/facebook.harm.html").
"The same set of aspects, for two very different spheres of life - that was amazing. Not many philosophers could apply to such widely differing areas. So I began reading up on Dooyeweerd's philosophy, and applying it in my field of work - information systems and human factors.
"That was the mid 1990s. I discovered two groups of systems thinkers, in Sweden and the Netherlands who were exploring the application of Dooyeweerd, so I joined them and we set up what became known as the Centre for Philosophy, Technology and Social Systems (CPTS), which organised an annual working conference in the Netherlands. These were Donald de Raadt and Sytse Strijbos, and their students Anita Mirijamdotter, Birgitta Bergvall-Kareborn and Darek Haftor, and I owe them a lot, and am still working with them sometimes. Over the two decades it ran, from 1995 to 2012, many thinkers passed through CPTS (see "cptsonline.org"), including many you will know, and I owe them much too.
"What especially thrilled me was that non-Christian thinkers enjoyed our high quality discussions, always informed by Dooyeweerd, including some top-level ones. After ten years, we published a book "Towards an Integrative Vision for Technology" (Springer: Strijbos & Basden, 2006), a collection of papers, many applying Reformational thinking.
"I set up The Dooyeweerd Pages (http://dooy.info/) in 1997, initially to collect the ideas and interpretations that people I met had of Dooyeweerd. But then it grew into a major website, a resource for the Dooyeweerdian community. It is sttll growing.
"When I was given my Personal Chair at my (secular) University of Salford (Professor of Human Factors and Philosophy in Information Systems), I asked the Vice Chancellor what the university wanted me to do, and he replied "Explore this Dutch Philosopher and his application to Information Systems." That is what I have been doing ever since, though it has widened. For example, Professor Peter Brandon became interested in the use of Dooyeweerd in urben sustainability.
"I have published several papers in good academic journals, and three books, all applying Dooyeweerd, most for a mainstream readership rather than Christians. For those interested, see my c.v.: "http://kgsvr.net/andrew/cv/publications.html"
"Having had to face challenges of using Dooyeweerd 'for real' I have grown to appreciate his philosophical thought, and so have published a few articles in Philosophia Reformata. I joined ThinkNet when it was originally called MythNet to discuss Roy Clouser's book on 'The Myth of Religious Neutrality'. That, along with Kalsbeek 1975 and Hendrik Hart's 'Understanding our World' were the books that most helped me understand Dooyeweerd - apart from Dooyeweerd's own books of course.
"Now I have retired, I am still writing papers, especially trying to help my PhD students who applied Dooyeweerd. The Lord God has made all this possible. If anyone is interested in my spiritual journey, and how Dooyeweerd fits in, you can find it at "http://abxn.org/spiritual.journey.html".
"I wonder if I'm the almost only person who came to Dooyeweerd, not because his was a 'Christian' philosophy, but because it *worked* better than all the others I had found (and still have)? I would argue that Dooyeweerd is the best philosopher of everyday experience and best philosopher of meaning to emerge so far.
"My present project, along with a group of others, is a major rethinking of economics using Dooyeweerd and a Christian perspective."
For more details, see his main web site, and especially Andrew's full C.V.
This page, "http://dooy.info/andrew.html", is part of The Dooyeweerd Pages, which explain, explore and discuss Dooyeweerd's interesting philosophy. Questions or comments are very welcome.
Compiled by Andrew Basden. You may use this material subject to conditions.
Written on the Amiga with Protext, in the style of classic HTML.
Created: 12 March 2004. Last updated: 11 May 2005 replaced u-net by demon. 12 October 2020 replaced demon by kgsvr.net; new .end, .nav, links to cv and wxn. 29 October 2021 Added an intro I wrote for RSD.