Testimonial – Rick Geuken

Once upon a time he wanted to become a real estate agent. But during his studies Real Estate & Brokerage Rick Geuken discovered a completely different side of the real estate business: sustainability and energy transition. After graduating from college, the Hanze Master in Energy for Society came his way. Rick: ‘I really want to contribute to the sustainability of our region this way.


How can we make homes more energy efficient, how can residential areas become self-sufficient, how can we build in a circular way? As a society we are facing an enormous challenge in the field of sustainability in our built environment. When I came into contact with this subject during my studies, I knew that I wanted to pursue it further.’

A master’s via the Hanze

After I got my bachelor’s degree, a lecturer pointed out to me that the Hanze also offers master’s programmes. One of them is Energy for Society. It allows you to become an expert in the field of energy transition and sustainability. It was particularly interesting that I could do my graduation research at NoorderRuimte, a knowledge center of the Hanze. This is where they do practice-based research into the built environment in the northern Netherlands.’

Research into an eco-village

Within this knowledge center you get to work with current questions from the region. And you get support from all sorts of experts who are also working on this subject. At NoorderRuimte I conducted research into the integration of self-sufficient dômes (glass domes) in the ecovillage Noordeland in Ter Apel. The residents plan to build several domes in their village. But, how do you make these really add value?’


I researched what the needs of the residents are and how the domes can meet those needs. On this basis, I gave various recommendations. Think of the application of a dôme as a greenhouse or as a place for meeting people, art and culture. I have now completed the research. A group of students, within the knowledge center, will now elaborate on my recommendations.

PhD research

There is a good chance that I will remain involved in this project in the years to come… I would like to work at the Hanze as a teacher/researcher. My ultimate goal is to do doctoral research via the Hanze – here too, the Hanze offers plenty of opportunities. I sincerely hope that I can continue to work at the Hanze for a while.

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