Joeri Van Mierlo is since 19 December 2020 officially a new member of the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium.
The Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium is an autonomous scientific-cultural society that promotes scholarship, science and the arts and contributes to their appeal. As an Academy, it is unique in that, apart from the sciences and the humanities, it also embraces the arts and the engineering sciences. As a result of this interdisciplinary approach, the KVAB is well-positioned to promote the great value of science and the arts.
With the exception of the medical sciences, all scholarly and scientific fields are represented: the exact, technical, natural, social and applied sciences, the humanities and the arts. Attention is paid to both the processes and the products of science. The Academy has entered into an agreement with the Flemish Government and receives funds to develop activities in three different areas: the internal activities of the Academy, its international profile and its interaction with society.
The Academy consists of four Classes - natural sciences, humanities, the arts and technical sciences - each of which comprises some 75 members. The members are elected by co-option - usually when they are in their 40s or 50s – and remain members for life.
The scientists, artists and business leaders from the various disciplines are introduced to each other's ideas during Class meetings and more informal encounters. This interdisciplinary mix counteracts the fragmentation and specialization typical of science and the arts, and facilitates innovation.
The members, often organized in smaller committees and working groups, and supported by the Academy’s staff, develop Position Papers, coordinate cycles of the Thinkers’ Programme, act as jury members in awarding prizes and organize presentations, colloquia, concerts and exhibitions.