The 36th Language Testing Research Colloquium will take place at the VU University Campus, situated in the Zuidas district of Amsterdam, south of the city centre. The campus, close to the city’s financial district, provides a central meeting place for all students and staff, joining the different faculties, including the VU Medical Center. The university has excellent transport links to Schiphol Airport (10 minutes by train from the nearby station Amsterdam Zuid) and Amsterdam’s historical centre (15 minutes by tram).
Capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam is the number 1 tourist destination in the Netherlands. With its many museums, including the Anne Frank house, the recently renovated Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh museum, it draws in millions of visitors from around the globe. Amsterdam is known for its many canals, featuring sixteenth and seventeenth-century townhouses, and the red light district.
VU University was founded in 1880. VU stands for Vrije Universiteit in Dutch (literally Free University) which is explained as 'free from the church, state and any commercial interest'. The basic philosophy is based on three core values: responsible, open and personally engaged. Originally based in the centre of Amsterdam, it moved to the Zuidas district in 1968. Many of the 1968 buildings are currently undergoing renovation works, while plans are being developed for new buildings, including student housing, in the future.
The late 1990s saw the beginning of the transformation of the Zuidas, previously a more or less rural area at the boundaries of the city, into the business district of Amsterdam. Since then, many financial institutions have moved their headquarters to the Zuidas, such as the WTC and the Dutch banks ING and ABN Amro. Their buildings provide an interesting skyline to this part of Amsterdam, with some exceptional architectural landmarks, such as the headquarters of the ING, nicknamed ‘the shoe’.
© LTRC2014 • Webdesign: Bert Brouwenstijn, VU University Amsterdam