Wat we kunnen leren van netwerken in de 17e eeuw; kleine gesloten netwerken gebaseerd op wederzijds vertrouwen

Dit artikel in het Engels/ this article in English


In maart publiceerde Amsterdam University Press het boek Managing Authentic Relationships; Facing New Challenges in a Changing Context. Een boek over netwerken en relatiemanagement geschreven door Jean Paul Wijers, Monica Bakker, Robert Collignon en The book about relationship management 'Managing Authentic Relationships 'Gerty Smit en met bijdrages van onder andere Prof. René Foqué, Paul Mosterd, Paul Spies en Tom Verbelen. Het boek richt zich op het bouwen en het beheren van een sterk netwerk en wederzijdse relaties voor de hele organisatie door de implementatie van een professioneel relatiemanagement op strategisch, tactisch en operationeel niveau. Het boek richt zich op diegenen die binnen een organisatie de verantwoordelijkheid hebben voor het management van een professioneel, zakelijk netwerk. 

De cover van het boek is een 17e-eeuws gildeschilderij van Nicolaes Pickenoy, afkomstig uit de collectie van het Amsterdam Museum. Het schilderij is op dit moment te zien in de permanente tentoonstelling ‘Hollanders van de Gouden Eeuw‘ in de Hermitage Amsterdam. In het boek Managing Authentic Relationships staan nog drie gildeschilderijen; het zijn historische voorbeelden van succesvol netwerken. De Adjunct Directeur van de Hermitage Amsterdam, Paul Mosterd, schrijft erover in het boek:

“In the Netherlands, there are no larger militia paintings than the ones that are displayed in the Hermitage Amsterdam. They remind us of the Golden Age; a period in which trade and culture flourished in our country. Within just a few generations, an incredible economic boom occurred in the newly-established Dutch Republic. The wealthy and powerful citizens who were then in charge, had themselves eternalised in monumental paintings. Nowadays we see them as large, beautifully painted works of art. We can also decipher the codes and analyse the messages that are hidden in these artworks. The paintings served as a kind of LinkedIn on the wall for citizens at the time. They hung in semi-public buildings and were intended for observation and consideration.

De gildeschilderijen fungeerden als een soort LinkedIn van de 17e eeuw

Militia members who contributed financially received a place in the painting. Being portrayed towards the front of the painting was relatively expensive and for a full-length depiction, you paid  full price. It was certainly worth it however, because a work of such prestige could boost your career. It was an opportunity to demonstrate your good citizenship and to show that you acknowledged your responsibility to the city. You could also indicate ‘where you came from’ as well as showing how well connected you were. “

In deze video legt Paul Mosterd uit wat er te zien is op het schilderij van Nicolaes Pickenoy


In Hoofdstuk 1 ‘The Importance of Networks and Relationships‘, schrijft Monica Bakker ook over netwerken in de 17e eeuw: “The Amsterdam admiralty, which was the economic and administrative power in the city, consisted of several closed networks, most of them based on strong family ties. People from within the network where called “friends,” whereas people from outside the network were referred to as “outsiders.” As an outsider, it was profoundly difficult to become part of these networks. The members enhanced their interdependence by gifts, invitations, and favors that at some point it was assumed would be returned. The network ties were based on reciprocity and trust and aimed to strengthen the group’s own economic and social position within Amsterdam society.”

Toekomstige netwerken zijn net als 17-eeuwse netwerken: kleine gesloten netwerken gebaseerd op wederzijds vertrouwen

De schilderijen bieden niet alleen een historisch voorbeeld, ze geven ons ook een visie op de toekomst. Een visie die wordt uitgelegd door Monica Bakker in Hoofdstuk 1: “The expectation of networks of the future is that they will be more closed and centered around a certain shared purpose in so-called high-trust value networks creating both social and financial capital to support their cause. So even while technological developments allow us to be in touch with an ever-wider range of people, the tendency is to use these new technological possibilities to create networks that are:

  • More personal.
  • More closed to outsiders.
  • Relatively small (to safeguard the self-generating power of the platforms).
  • Based on trust and reciprocity.

The seventeenth-century network of friends and outsiders probably looks very dated at first but it is actually coming back, just in a much more complex state, not bound to a shared geographical location and with less face-to-face interaction. Quite like in the decade of the Amsterdam admiralty, personal and organizational success will depend on networking power.”


Lees meer artikelen over Managing Authentic Relationships op ons blog:
Managing Authentic Relationship is een boek over relatiemanagement en netwerken gepubliceerd door Amsterdam University Press:

The book about relationship management 'Managing Authentic Relationships '




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