How does one think? How does the human brain work? What are the best thinking tools? Those were the central questions in my studies philosophy and psychology. During my post-doc in journalism and my time as an economics editor at De Volkskrant I’ve learned to keep asking questions, distinguishing the main issue from side issues and question an argument critically.
I still practice writing clearly on a weekly basis, as a columnist for Vrij Nederland. Since 2005, when I started De Argumentenfabriek (The Argument Factory), together with my Volkskrant-colleague Frank Kalshoven, my work revolves around thinking clearly and how to help others achieve this. Clear thinking is structured thinking. An important tool we use at the Argumentenfabriek is the visualisation of information. We draw complex information on beautifully crafted maps, apps and dashboards.
De gids voor helder denken (Dutch only) the title of the book Suzanne Weusten and I wrote about the visual thinking tools of the Argumentenfabriek. This book, which already sold more than 10000 copies, forms the basis of our work at our De Denkacademie (The Thinking Academy). I’m proud of the fact that our training enables people to enhance their thinking abilities.