Nick Ottens is a journalist, former political risk consultant and former research manager for XPRIZE, where he designed prize competitions to incentivize breakthrough innovation in agriculture, food and health care. He has reported from Amsterdam, Barcelona and New York for various Dutch- and English-language media, including the Atlantic Council, EUobserver, NRC, Trouw and World Politics Review.
Nick writes about the politics of France, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States in his newsletter, Atlantic Sentinel, and Wynia’s Week. In his spare time, he edits the online magazines Never Was and Forgotten Trek.
He is a member of the board of Liberal Green, the sustainability network of the Dutch liberal party VVD.Download CV
May 2023 – Present
Organize and moderate events and meetings with party members and politicians. Research innovations in agriculture and food. Write policy papers and op-eds.
Jul 2021 – Present
Research and write stories about Dutch energy, housing, labor and migration policy as well as the politics of Spain and the United States.
Nov 2009 – Present
Blog about American, Dutch, French and Spanish politics.
Research Manager (Health)
Mar 2021 – Jan 2022
Coordinate and facilitate the research program management life cycle: from inception to implementation, reporting and presenting of findings.
Conduct desk research and interviews. Plan and lead interactive workshops with external experts. Regularly update the CEO and Board of Directors.
Develop, write and pitch designs for four $30M to $65M moonshot prize competitions in home care, medical imaging and mental health, including prize objectives, budgets, timelines, and testing and judging criteria.
Jun 2018 – Jan 2022
Lead expert consultations for XPRIZE’s future studies into housing, food, forests and human longevity.
Develop methodologies to crowdsource external expert opinion on the design of XPRIZE’s incentive prize competitions, including a $15M prize for meat alternatives and a $5M prize for rapid reskilling.
Coordinate with research staff to assess expert needs and implement outreach.
Train and supervise two expert community managers.
Political Risk Analyst (Europe)
Oct 2017 – May 2018
Daily political risk assessments for France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK.
School of International Futures
Apr – Sep 2017
Manage an online interactive research project about political trends in South America.
Jan 2014 – Feb 2017
Develop unique research methodologies to crowdsource policy and scenario planning, trend analysis and interactive wargames. Plan and manage budgets, team composition, art direction, timelines and deliverables.
Manage supervisors and editors. Monitor multiplayer online simulations involving dozens of expert participants.
Conduct analysis and write blogs and reports about Brexit, Catalonia’s independence movement, immigration, Russia’s military intervention in Syria and the War in Donbas.
Revise and finalize 39 project deliverables for private- and public-sector clients including Deloitte, EY, Grant Thornton, NATO and USAFRICOM.
Apr 2011 – Jan 2014
Foreign Desk Intern
Mar – Jun 2012
MPhil History of European Expansion and Globalization
2009 – 2011
AreoFunding Pollution: Big Ag and the Dutch Farmers’ Protests
World Politics ReviewWhy Countries Like Spain Should Welcome Their Fragmented Party Politics
Atlantic SentinelGermany Has Bigger Drug Problem Than Netherlands
EUobserverMacron has delivered for his supporters
Atlantic CouncilFar right grows in opposition to Dutch consensus politics
Atlantic SentinelThe Best Argument Against Medicare-for-All Is Not Cost
Diplomatic CourierItaly Has Become Two Countries
The CornerRepeal of Spanish Labor Reform Is Unwise
The National InterestCatalonia and Spain Are Reaching the Breaking Point
Wynia’s WeekStilletjes sterft het gasverbod: onhaalbaar en onbetaalbaar
NRCCatalonië is nu een landelijke splijtzwam
SargassoDe politie is veel te veel met drugs bezig
Agro conglomerates are protecting their own interests — not farmers’ — by funding protests and boycotting talks with the Dutch government.
Fragmentation is often interpreted as a sign of political crisis, and indeed it can be a bumpy ride. But multiparty democracy and coalition politics are stronger in the end. The Netherlands is proof.
Der Spiegel makes a mockery of the Dutch drug policy. It should take a look in the mirror.
To dismiss Macron as a one-eyed king in the land of the blind is to underestimate his appeal. He promised long-overdue labor and pension reforms, and to make France a leader in Europe again. And he has.
The more anti-establishment parties grow, the more parties in the center need to team up to govern the country, which lends credence to the far right’s claim that all mainstream parties are the same.
Gradualism has fallen out of favor on the American left, but a piecemeal approach is still advisable when reforming a $3.5 trillion industry that literally affects every single American.
Italy has long been split between an economically vibrant north and a stagnant south. Now that divide has become political.
The reforms did not create more precarious jobs. They they did not cause higher unemployment. They barely made a dent in wages.
Supporters of Catalan independence increasingly identify as exclusively “Catalan” and opponents as exclusively “Spanish.” Those identities used to overlap.
Het vorige kabinet verbood het aansluiten van nieuwe woningen op aardgas. In 2030 moesten bovendien 1,5 miljoen bestaande woningen van het gas afgesloten zijn en de rest in 2050. Er is nog nauwelijks een begin gemaakt.
Voor aanhangers van onafhankelijkheid is er geen weg meer terug. In de rest van Spanje is juist de haat jegens de Catalanen toegenomen..
60.000 harddrugsverslaafden, 200 sterfgevallen per jaar en af en toe een opgefokte cocaïnesnuiver in de nachtclub. Is dat 1,8 tot 2,7 miljard euro waard?
Dutch journalist Nick Ottens warns that the decision of the Spanish prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, to ignore the Catalan demands could lead to an escalation of the independence crisis in Catalonia. He recalls that the Republican Left, “the most moderate of the Catalan independence parties,” decided to keep Sánchez in power, but now finds “it has few results to show for it.”
“Italy’s Democratic Party spent more time in the campaign defending abortion, LGBT and immigration rights from the threat of the far-right,” said Nick Ottens, a European politics analyst. “That helped the right more than it helped the left. Social justice resonates with university-educated Italians in big cities like Bologna and Florence. It doesn’t convince the garbage collector in Naples or the unemployed single mother in Palermo that the left has their interests at heart.”
In light of the slogan “no farmers, no food,” how will the Dutch policy affect the supply of food in the country, in Europe and in the world? Nick Ottens believes these warnings are exaggerated: “Half of Dutch food exports, mostly meat and dairy products, go to Germany, France, the United Kingdom and Belgium. I do not expect food shortages there if Dutch exports are reduced. I would also point out that we need to import a lot of cereals, soybeans and other feed for animal husbandry. These crops are mostly from less developed parts of the world, where they could be used to feed the local population.”
“Italy is, not for the first time, in political crisis,” said Nick Ottens, chief editor of the transatlantic opinion website Atlantic Sentinel. “But this time, what happens in Rome could have a big impact on financial markets, the euro, and the longer-term future of the European Union as a whole.”