The 18th century Stock Exchange building with the windows of the BGPW offices

The Batavian Society of Experimental Philosophy (= experimental science) is one of the oldest scientific societies in our country. Founded in 1769 by Steven Hoogendijk (a wealthy clockmaker from Rotterdam), possibly modeled on the Accademia dei Lincei (1603-1651) or the Royal Society (1660-present). Right from the start, the Society was given rooms in the Stock Exchange building of 1736 (see engraving).

While the first century and a half of its existence mainly promoted various forms of technical innovation, in the past century the emphasis shifted to both medicine and technology.

The society had its own laboratory and an extensive arsenal of historical scientific instruments, as well as an extensive historical innovation library. Unfortunately, most of these possessions were lost in the bombing of Rotterdam in 1940, during which the Beursgebouw was completely destroyed.

More information can be found in the independently maintained entry of the Dutch Wikipedia (here).

Currently, the Society organizes six lectures annually in Rotterdam for its members, on innovative topics in medicine, technology or medical technology.

In addition, the Society awards prizes to outstanding graduates from Erasmus University Rotterdam and Delft University of Technology. It also awards a biennial promotional prize in odd years, both in Rotterdam and Delft. Finally, the biennial International Steven Hoogendijk Award for Medical Engineering is awarded, for global breakthroughs at the intersection of medicine and technology. This happens in even years. Both events usually take place in September. The prizes and events are financed from the estate of Steven Hoogendijk and from voluntary contributions by the members of the Society. The Society has ANBI status, so donations are tax deductible within the applicable limits.

The Society has approximately 400 members with a scientific background. Doctors, technicians and others are asked to become members upon recommendation.