Drs. T.J.H. Nicolaije (Tim)

PhD Student

Tim Nicolaije
PO Box 217
7500 AE Enschede

Telephone: (053) 489 3353
Fax: (053) 489 2159


Tim Nicolaije (1983) is a PhD student at the University of Twente, Department of Science, Technology and Policy Studies (STePS). He took his BSc (Hons.) at University College Utrecht, where he majored in physics and astronomy. Having become interested in the history of science during the course of these studies, he completed his undergraduate training in 2005 with a thesis on the different historical views on Isaac Newton’s alchemical practices. Hereafter he entered the master’s programme History and Philosophy of Science at the Institute for History and Foundations of Science at Utrecht University. In 2007 he received his MSc (cum laude) with a thesis on the reception of Pierre Simon Laplace’s nebular hypothesis in early-nineteenth-century British thought.


Together with Arjen Dijkstra he currently participates in the NWO-funded project “The Uses of Mathematics in the Dutch Republic”, which is supervised by Fokko Jan Dijksterhuis. This project aims at creating a basis for a cultural approach towards the history of (Dutch) mathematics. Tim’s PhD research focuses on mapping out the various networks of mathematical practitioners in the Dutch Republic. Who engaged in mathematical activities and why? How were such activities valued by themselves and by society? In which circles could such practitioners be found and in what ways did these kinds of groups influence each other? This will not only include those who were professionally occupied with mathematics, but also the “amateurs” who in some way or another dealt with mathematics. This research tries to provide a description of the heterogeneous field of mathematics in the Dutch Republic, wherein the cultural significance of mathematical practices, rather than the body of mathematical ideas itself, will provide the perspective.
Tim’s other research interests include science and religion, science and literature, history of astronomy, and Isaac Newton.



  • Huizinga Research Institute and Graduate School of Cultural History
  • Genootschap Gewina (Dutch/Belgian Society for the History of Science and University History)

Other activities