Curriculum Vitae Gerrit Bloothooft


  • HBS-B High School Alkmaar (1970)
  • Technical University Delft - Technical Physics (1977)
  • Free University Amsterdam (PhD 1985)
  • TNO-IZF Soesterberg (1977-1979)
  • Free University Amsterdam (1979-1982)
  • Utrecht University (1982-present)
  • Meertens Instituut KNAW (2008-2009, 0.3 fte)
I'm born on Sunday August 29, 1952 in Alkmaar, a small city north of Amsterdam, reknown for its historical cheese market.  After graduation from high school I moved to Delft Technical University and studied Technical Physics, in particular Acoustic Perception. After obtaining my engineering degree in 1977 I went to  TNO-IZF (now TNO-Human factors) in Soesterberg where I shared the room with Louis Pols. In 1978 I got the offer from Reinier Plomp for a PhD study at the Free University of Amsterdam on the acoustics and perception of sung vowels. I moved to Amsterdam where I'm living still with my family. In 1982, Toon Cohen and Marcel van den Broecke offered a position at the Phonetics department in the Arts Faculty at Utrecht University. My work was co-operative research between the departments of Phonetics and Phoniatrics. I got my doctoral degree at the Free University Amsterdam in 1985. In 1988 I switched departments in Utrecht and came to the department of Computers and Arts to teach in the frame work of the specialisation in Speech Technology. Since 1998 I'm back again in the Linguistics *Phonetics) department in the group of Sieb Nooteboom. Research interests are speech automation, in particular the study of acoustic voice characteristics for normal and pathological voices, with a special interest for the singing voice.

My historical interests inspired me to investigate the topic of nominal record linkage, and I co-operated with colleagues from the Meertens Institute in Amsterdam, and the historical department of the Arts Faculty in Utrecht.  Later, this interest transformed into onomastics, especially when I could get full population databases (youth and elderly) of first names in the Netherlands. Especially the information of what first names are given in each family was a gold mine, on the basis of which social-cultural relationships of naming could be established. It was also possible to make a very detailed map of The Netherlands demonstrating regional and local differences in modern naming. The book 'Over voornamen' (On first names) which I published in 2004 with Emma van Nifterick and Doreen Gerritzen, had great exposure in the media.

Since 1990 I'm active at the international level, and especially concerned with training and education. First as co-ordinator of an EU Erasmus ICP Phonetics and Speech Communication (student exchange, intensive programmes), and from 1996 onwards as co-ordinator of a prestigious EU Socrates Thematic Network  "Speech Communication Sciences". I was the training convenor of ELSNET (EU Network of Excellence in Language and Speech) from 1991-2001 and, among others, responsible for ten annual European Summer Schools. In 1997 I also initiated a European Masters project in the area of Language and Speech, and co-ordinated the project until Frank van Eijnde took over in 2002. Special actions include the organisation of the ELSNET Olympics (1997), the Education Arena (1999), Imagination 2001 (2001), the Interspeech Science Quiz (2005) and the Synthesis of Singing Challenge (2007) at consecutive Eurospeech conferences. From 1998-2005, I was a board member of the International Speech Communication Association, in the first four years as initiator and co-ordinator of Special Interst Groups, in the last four years as treasurer.

In the Utrecht Faculty of Arts I co-ordinated the ICT-centre between 2001 and 2008. In 2008-2012 I worked for 0.2 fte at the Meertens Institute and developed the online Onomastic databases there. From 2009-2013 I particated in the LINKS project with the International Institute of Social History for the development of a system for historical nominal record linkage for person reconstruction in the 19th century. Since 2009 I also coordinate the Linguistics education in Utrecht.


Modified 02-04-2009