CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis (CPB) was founded in 1945. Research at CPB is carried out on CPB’s own initiative, or at the request of the government, parliament, individual members of parliament, national trade unions or employers federations.
CPB works at the crossroads of the economic sciences and public policy.
Literally translated, CPB in Dutch means ‘Central Planning Bureau’. This has been a misnomer from the start, as CPB has never been engaged in economic planning. It analyses the effects of current and future government policies. Hence, our English name: CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis. However, because CPB is so well known in the Netherlands, we keep the name our founders gave us.
CPB is a part of the ministry of Economic Affairs. Its director is appointed by the Minister, in consultation with other members of the government. However, CPB is fully independent as far as the contents of its work are concerned. It also has its own legal mandate and an independent executive and advisory committee. This Central Planning Committee (CPC) is currently chaired by Hans Smits.
CPB is an integral part of the budget of the ministry of Economic Affairs. It is largely publicly financed. To ensure its independence, a maximum of twenty percent of its annual budget may originate from external assignments. However, CPB is not allowed to compete with commercial research bureaus, and external assignments are limited to local and national governments, European institutions or international governmental organisations.
CPB’s founding director was Jan Tinbergen (1945-1955), pioneer of econometrics and laureate of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (1969). He was succeeded by Fred Polak (1955-1957), Pieter de Wolff (1957-1966), Cees van den Beld (1966-1984), Peter de Ridder (1984-1989), Gerrit Zalm (1989-1994), Henk Don (1994-2006) and Coen Teulings (2006-2013). From August 2013, Laura van Geest is the director of CPB.