Machiavelli Foundation

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Group.png Machiavelli Foundation
(Awards committeeWebsiteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Stichting Machiavelli.png
InterestsMH17, Bellingcat
Membership• Marja Wagenaar
• Wim van der Weegen
• Fons Lambie
• Wilco Boom
• Marjan Hammersma
• Jan Hoedeman
• Carla Joosten
• Peter van Keulen
• Tom van der Lee
• Ivar Nijhuis
• Stephan Schrover
• Sjoerd Sjoerdsma
• Remco Meijer
• Roos Vermeij
• Harry van der Molen
Dutch prize committee for most successful propaganda

The Machiavelli Foundation (Dutch:Stichting Machiavelli) is a Dutch foundation giving awards for successful PR-work, including to The Dutch Safety Board (2015) because of their report on the MH17, and Bellingcat (2019).


The Machiavelli foundation was founded in the late 1980s. Its board consists of politicians, military, central journalists and editors, communication (PR) experts and scientists. The walls that naturally exist between these professions are pulled down for the duration of the board meetings.[1] The present board has a representative from the armed forces, the Director of Communications at the Ministry of Defence.

The Machiavelli Award

The main activity of the foundation is to present a yearly award: the Machiavelli award. This award is granted to a person or organization who has excelled in public communication. The political philosopher Machiavelli makes one immediately think about his principle ‘the end justifies the means’. The Machiavelli award is granted to the person or organization who has been the most effective in putting this principle into practice.[2] ("Always in a positive way and for a positive cause" is the disclaimer, but this can mean just about anything).

  • Former winners include the The Dutch Safety Board (2015) because with their report on the MH17 "they have – where possible – given clarity to [..] the world in general. The way in which the Safety Board has done it provides a good example of outstanding communication." (the end justifies the means...)

Machiavelli lecture

The presentation of the yearly Machiavelli award is traditionally accompanied by a yearly Machiavelli lecture. Past lecturers include:


Sponsors include Public Matters, a Dutch PR-company specializing in Strategic Communications to influence policy developments [..] and effectively manage stakeholders and media.[4]

Board Members

Marja Wagenaar Director Leadership int. (chairperson)

Wim van der Weegen Director of Communications at the Ministry of Defence (secretary)

Fons Lambie Political correspondent at RTL Nederland

Wilco Boom Political correspondent at

Marjan Hammersma Secretary-general of Media and Culture at the ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW)

Jan Hoedeman Political editor at the newspaper Algemeen Dagblad

Carla Joosten Political editor at Elsevier

Peter van Keulen Director Public Matters

Tom van der Lee Member of parliament GroenLinks

Ivar Nijhuis Directeur Communicatie Ministerie van Justitie & Veiligheid

Stephan Schrover Director-general at the Government Information Service (RVD)

Sjoerd Sjoerdsma Member of parliament D66

Remco Meijer Political editor at the newspaper De Volkskrant

Roos Vermeij Director Pension Fund PME

Harry van der Molen Member of parliament CDA