February 21, 2005

Workshop in The Hague

On February 17th, a workshop was organised in the Dutch Insurer's Association's building. It was organised by TNO, the dutch institute for technical-scientific research, and it revolved around PAYD insurance. Todd Litman, the chairman of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute and the world's best known researcher on (and proponent of) PAYD insurance, was there, as well as representatives of every major dutch motor insurance company (including PAYD pioneers Polis Direct), representatives from the dutch motorists' association, from the transport ministry, and from the Waarborgfonds, the dutch motor insurance guarantee fund.

For me, it was a unique chance to hear those in the know on the subject, to follow discussions, to see presentations and to shake hands and trade cards. It was very inspirational, although the 'golden' lead to exactly that piece of information I want to find out with my research still has to show up...

Nevertheless, it is very good for one's understanding of certain research to discuss it with others that have also read it. And it's very clarifying also to talk about it with people with diverse professional interests in developments on the subject. I want to thank TNO for inviting me, and all those present there for their kind supply of information!

Right now I am reading a guide to the setup of a scientific research project. I realise that my education so far has lacked a practical and coherent enough approach to the setup of research and that I have trouble applying edifying principles to petty reality. My own fault entirely, needless to say, I just need some extra help with that. I hope to bridge some of the gap with the book I am reading (Methods and techniques, by Baarda and De Goede, Stenfert Kroese, second edition, Houten(NL), 1997) and the remainder by talking to yet more experts. I will meet with a professor, an insurance professional and a traffic psychologist soon. I hope they will provide me with both useful suggestions for literature and suggestions on what 'unknown' bit to carve out and make a 'known' of with my research.

Christof

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