Why was the chair founded?

Given the low percentage of infrastructure spending (in % of GDP in particular) in Belgium, and the necessary catching up of our transport infrastructure, we hope with our research and together with our sponsors to support policy makers of various levels and in the three regions in Belgium towards a sustainable asset management framework.

Mission and objective

The mission is to create a sustainable relationship between the Universities and interested partners in view of sustainable development of infrastructure in Belgium, with a focus on public infrastructure projects.

The objective of the Chair is the realization of an infrastructure asset management framework for the Belgian regions.


Within the VUB, and in collaboration with ULB, ORI vzw through its partners Antea Belgium NV, Arcadis Belgium NV, Sweco Belgium and Tractebel Engie provide the funding for this Chair.

Chair type




Holder of the Chair

Prof. dr. Elvira Haezendonck is professor at the Solvay Business School of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), and guest lecturer at the University of Antwerp and Erasmus University of Rotterdam. She has built her expertise in nearly 24 years on strategic and policy aspects of competitiveness and the role of infrastructure. She has applied this on many clusters, including ports. From 2010 until 2018 she was chair holder and co-promotor of the VUB chair in public-private partnerships, and responsible for developing a vast network of expertise on this in Belgium. Her applied research, developed in +50 research projects and disseminated in various publications, aims to be practically oriented and relevant to policy makers.



Prof. dr. Manuel Hensmans is an Associate Professor of Strategic Management & Innovation at the Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, ULB. Manuel teaches courses in Strategy, International Strategy and Innovation Strategy at the MSc, MBA and Executive levels. He has acted as an Associate Professor at Toulouse Business School, an executive lecturer at Rotterdam School of Management and an executive tutor at London Business School. Manuel's papers have been accepted for publication in journals such as MIT Sloan Management Review, Organization Studies, Management International Review, Long Range Planning, Organization and Journal of Organizational Change Management; as well as in various books. His most recent book is called Strategic Transformation, Palgrave 2013, which was adapted and translated in Chinese in 2015. The Financial Times described it as the "Chief Executive's in-depth guide to how to sustain and refresh strategy over time".