Ben Bekkering

Senior Research Associate
Associates are experts in their own field and contractually affiliated with Clingendael. Although associates are not employees of the Clingendael Institute, they comply with all policies that Clingendael staff do.


  • Security and Defence

In 2019, Ben Bekkering retired from the Royal Netherlands Navy after 40 incredible and rewarding years. Most of these 40 years were spent at sea, alternated by periodes in shore based staffs, mostly in the field of policy and plans. Undoubtedly, the three seabased commands were the highlight of his career, commanding a frigate, an amphibious ship and a standing NATO Task Group during a variety of maritime missions and operations. His career culminated in two years as deputy head of the Royal Netherlands Navy and three years as permanent military representative to both NATO and EU. 

Since his retirement, Ben's focus has been on contributing to debates and discussions around the many issues that follow from the close and undeniable relations between the maritime environment, global security and climate change. 

Travel remains Ben's other great passion, whether it is backpacking through Asia and Africa or taking his vintage Volkswagen T2 Camper Van on long journeys to the many beautiful corners of Europe. 

My work