Non quid sed quando valet

John A. Michon

Curriculum Vitae

Personal facts 

Born in Utrecht, The Netherlands, 29 October 1935.
Married in 1960 to Hetty Sommer (1937)
Two children, Job (1962), Annet (1964-1997)

Military service (1962-1963);
            active as 2nd Lt for special commissions (QMG); retired as Reserve 1st Lt in 1970.  


1942-1948: Primary School (Marnix School, Utrecht
1948-1954: Utrecht Municipal Gymnasium (Latin Grammar School; β-curriculum)
1954-1960: University of Utrecht (study for an ‘all but dissertation’ degree in psychology;
                 Specializations: clinical psychology, criminology and psychopathology)
1960:         Professional accreditation Netherlands Institute of Psychologists (NIP)
1967:         PhD in Social Sciences at the University of Leiden;
                        Title of dissertation: Timing in Temporal Tracking.
                        Promotores: J. P. van de Geer (psychology) and G. Zoutendijk (mathematics).


Professional Career

1956-1960: Student-assistant at the University of Utrecht

1956-1957: Assistant instructor for general and experimental psychology (experimental methods)
1957-1958: Assistant instructor for clinical psychology (psychodiagnostic techniques)
1957-1959: Assistant at the Institute for Penal Law and Criminology (empirical research and statistics)

1960-1973: Research associate at the TNO Institute for Perception, Soesterberg

1960-1967: Research scientist, Department of Psychology
1961:         Visiting scientist, Admiralty Research Laboratories, Teddington and London, UK
1965-1966: Visiting scientist, Carnegie Institute of Technology and Cornell University
1967-1969: Senior scientist, Department of Psychology; co-ordinator for road user studies
1969-1973: Head, Department of Road User and Safety Studies

1971-1992: Full professor, chair of experimental psychology and traffic science, University of Groningen

1971-1986: Director, Institute of Experimental Psychology
1975-1976: Fellow, Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies (NIAS), Wassenaar
1977-1992: Chairman and Director, Traffic Research Centre
1983-1986: Chairman, School of Psychology, and Associate Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences
1986-1987: Visiting Professor of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

1992-1998: Director, Netherlands Institute for the Study of Criminality and Law Enforcement (NSCR)
                 Research Professor, Faculties of Law and Social Sciences, Leiden University

1997: Visiting Fellow, Social Sciences Research School, Australian National University, Canberra

1998-2002: Senior Research Professor of Psychonomics, Leiden University

2003-: Emeritus professor, Leiden University



  • 1965:    NATO Science Fellowship
  • 1975:    Fellow, Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study (NIAS), Wassenaar
  • 1977:    Honda Foundation Lecturing Award, Japan
  • 1981:    Member, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW)
  • 1989:    Member, Academia Europaea (London)
  • 1989:    Honorary promotor for Allen Newell’s doctorate honoris causa, Groningen University
  • 1995:    Doctor honoris causa, Université de Liège, Belgium
  • 1996:    Member, Europäische Akademie der Wissenschaften und Künste (Salzburg)
  • 2002:    Knight in the Order of the Netherlands Lion
  • 2002:    Honorary member, International Society for the Study of Time
  • 2005:    Medal of honour, Netherlands Psychonomics Society


Dissertations supervised 

  • 1976:    W. H. Janssen: On the nature of the mental image (Groningen, 25 November)
  • 1977:    L. G. M. Noordman: Inferring from language (Groningen, 22 December; cum laude)
  • 1977:    W. Vonk: Retrieval from semantic memory (Groningen, 22 December; cum laude)
  • 1978:    S. J. Bakker: Biofeedback (Groningen, 29 June)
  • 1979:    A. H. Wertheim: Information processed in ocular pursuit (Groningen, 22 March)
  • 1980:    G. Mulder: The heart of mental effort (Groningen, 27 March)
  • 1981:    J. A. Rothengatter: Traffic safety education for young children (Groningen, 19 March)
  • 1981:    R. A. Rasch: Aspects of perception and performance of polyphonic music (Groningen, 2 April)
  • 1981:    A. H. van Zomeren: Reaction time and attention after closed head injury (Groningen,15 April)
  • 1983:    H. H. van der Molen: Pedestrian ethology( Groningen, 28 April)
  • 1985:    W. H. Brouwer: Limitations of attention after closed head injury (Groningen, 14 November)
  • 1986:    M. P. Vinjé: Stop, kijk uit, luister, en dan...? (Groningen, 17 April)
  • 1986:    J. L. Jackson: The processing of temporal information (Groningen, 26 June)
  • 1987:    J. B. J. Riemersma: Visual cues in straight road driving (Groningen, 17 September)
  • 1987:    C. W. van Knippenberg-Den Brinker: Time in travel (Groningen, 17 September)
  • 1989:    R. J. Jorna: Kennisrepresentaties en symbolen in de geest (Groningen, 16 February)
  • 1991:    A. M. Schaafstal: Diagnostic skill in process operation (Groningen, 26 September)
  • 1991:    D. R. M. Timmermans: Decision aids for bounded rationalists (Groningen, 7 November)
  • 1991:    L. C. W. P. Hendrickx: How versus how often (Groningen, 21 November; cum laude)
  • 1994:    A. de Haan: Connected codes (Groningen, 9 June)
  • 1995:    P. J. M. D. Essens: Determinants of temporal pattern perception (Nijmegen, 25 January)
  • 1995:    J. Aasman: Modelling driver behaviour in Soar (Groningen, 4 May)
  • 2000:    J. W. de Keijser: Punishment and purpose (Leiden, 15 March, cum laude)
  • 2001:    F. J. Pakes: Spiders in the web (Leiden, 10 January)
  • 2002:    J. B. J. van der Leij: Bejegening op maat (Leiden, 31 October)



(a) Current

  • Member, Advisory Council Netherlands Psychonomics Society (1985- )
  • Chairman, Steering Committee ‘Cognition and Behaviour’ (NWO) (2001- )

 (b) Completed (selection, in order of appointment)

  • President (1956-1958) Utrecht Psychology Student Association ‘Ψυχη Νικαι’
  • Vice-president Utrecht Social Sciences Student Faculty (1957-1958)
  • Member, Council Inter-university Psychology Student Association, NIOPS (1957-1960)
  • Member, SWOV Ad hoc Human Factors Steering Committee (1964-1965)
  • Member, General Board Netherlands Institute of Psychologists (1966-1969)
  • Member, TNO Committee Traffic and Transport Research (1969-1978)
  • Professor and Chair, Experimental psychology (1971-1992)
  • Director, Institute for Experimental Psychology (1971-1986)
  • Member, Advisory Board Verkeersacademie Tilburg (1973-~1978)
  • Member, Advisory Board Leeuwarden Polytechnics College (1974-1980)
  • Member, General Board Royal Dutch Tourist Association ANWB, The Hague (1976-1983)
  • Advisor to the Cabinet Minister of Transport, United Kingdom (1976-1979)
  • Membre du Conseil de l'Association de Psychologie Scientifique de Langue Française (1977-1985)
  • Member, National Council for Traffic Safety (1977-1986, Vice Chairman beginning in 1980)
  • Chairman and Director, Traffic Research Centre, Groningen University (1977-1992)
  • Chairman, Committee for the NRBA Chair of Traffic Psychology, Groningen (1977-1992)
  • Key person, International Association for Traffic and Safety Sciences IATSS, Tokyo (1977-1991)
  • Member, Advisory Board, European Society for Cognitive Psychology (1989-2007)
  • Chairman, National Advisory Committee for Research on Information Management (1982-1984)
  • Member, Board of the Foundation ‘Noordelijk Verkeersoefenterrein’ (1982-1992)
  • Chairman, Department of Psychology, Groningen (1983-1986)
  • Associate Dean, School of Behavioural and Social Sciences, Groningen (1983-1986)
  • Member, Jury of the ‘Centraal Beheer’ Safety Prize (1983-1990)
  • Member, National Advisory Committee on the Effects of Wind Energy (1984-1986)
  • Member, NWO Standing Committee for the Social and Behavioural Sciences (1984-1986)
  • Principal, Research Unit Information Processing and Performance, Groningen University (1984-1992)
  • Principal, Research Unit Mobility and Traffic, Groningen University (1984-1992)
  • Member, Advisory Board Nijmegen Institute for Cognition and Information Technology (1986-1995)
  • Chairman, KNAW Division of Behavioural and Social Sciences (1988-1997)
  • Member, Visiting Committee for the VSNU Psychology Curriculum Evaluation (1988-1989)
  • Member, Executive Board, Research School Behavioural, Cognitive and Neurosciences (1988-1992)
  • Chairman, Steering Committee for the Technical Curriculum Cognitive Science (1990-1992)
  • Member, Evaluation Committee of the NWO Behavioural Science Research Foundation (1991-1992)
  • Member, Evaluation Committee of the NWO Social Science Research Foundation (1991-1992)
  • Member, Jury Dr. H.W. Muller Award KNAW (1992-1999)
  • Member, NIP "Committee 21" for the Future of the Psychology Curriculum (1993)
  • Member, Advisory Council, Netherlands Telematics Research Centre,Enschede (1993-1997)
  • Chairman, Standing Selection Committee for ‘KNAW Onderzoekers’ (1993-1997)
  • Chairman, Committee Revitalization of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Erasmus University (1994)
  • Member, Board of Trustees Van der Gaag Foundation KNAW (1994-1998)
  • Chairman, Ad hoc Advisory Committee on Cognitive Science, Ministry of OCW (1996-1997)
  • Member, Sociaal Wetenschappelijke Raad (Social Sciences Council) (1996-2003)
  • Member, Steering Committee Rotterdam Socio-medical Cohort Study (1996-1998)
  • Chairman, External Technical Audit Committee, TNO Human Factors Research Institute (1997)
  • Member, Steering Committee for the Research School on Public Safety and Security (1997-1998)
  • Member, SWR ad hoc Advisory Committee Management of Privacy-Sensitive Data (1997-1999
  • Chairman, External Audit Committee, EPOS (Experimental Psychology Research School) (1998)
  • Member, Standing Committee for the Akademiepenning (KNAW) (1998-2004)
  • Chairman, Preparatory Program Committee for the Cognitive Sciences NWO (2000-2001)
  • Member, Panel Behavioural Sciences, Portuguese Foundation Science and Technology (2000-2003)
  • Senior Adviser, NWO Pioneer Program ‘Music, Mind, Machine’ (Radboud University) (2001-2004)
  • Chairman, Accreditation Committee for the Research Schools (ECOS, KNAW) (2000-2008)
  • Member, Advisory Board, Faculty of Industrial Design, Technical University Delft (2000-2008)
  • Member, Standing Committee for the Cognitive Sciences (KNAW) (2005-2010)
  • Honorary secretary, Jury for the Dr. A. H. Heineken Prize for Cognitive Science (KNAW) (2005-2010)


Memberships in learned societies

(a) Present memberships (selection)

  • International Society for the Study of Time (1968- )
  • Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (1981- )
  • Nederlandse Vereniging voor Psychonomie (1984- )
  • Academia Europaea (London) (1989- )

(b) Past memberships (selection)

  • Nederlands Instituut van Psychologen (1962-2007 )
  • American Psychological Association (1966-2004)
  • Psychonomics Society (1967-1980)
  • Netherlands Psychonomics Foundation (1968-1984)
  • Association de Psychologie Scientifique de Langue Française (1968-1985)
  • Transportation Research Board USA (1968-1992)
  • Vereniging voor Biologische Psychiatrie
  • Systeemgroep Nederland
  • Psychon NWO (1984-1990)
  • European Society for Cognitive Psychology (1985-2007)
  • Europäische Akademie der Wissenschaften und Künste (Salzburg) (1996-2010)

(c) Offices held (selection)

  • Netherlands Institute of Psychologists (Board Member, 1966-1969)
  • Netherlands Psychonomics Foundation (Secretary 1968-1972, President 1975-1980)
  • Association de Psychologie Scientifique de Langue Française (Membre du Conseil,1976-1985)
  • International Society for the Study of Time (Member,Council, 1979-1988; President, 1983-1986)
  • European Society for Cognitive Psychology (Board Member, 1985-1991; Secretary, 1985-1987)
  • Euro-Soar Research Network (Secretary-Treasurer, 1989-1999)
  • European Association of Psychology and Law (Secretary, 1994-1999)


Miscellaneous activities

The following constitutes a limited selection of past and present activities

(a) Editorial activities (selection)

  • Editor, Acta Psychologica (1971-1974)
  • Editor in chief, Handboek der Psychonomie (1976); Handbook of Psychonomics (2 vols.,1979)
  • Guest editor :
    • International Review of Applied Psychology (1980)
    • Accident Analysis and Prevention (1981)
    • Psychological Research (1987)
    • IATSS Research (1990)
    • Time & Society (1993)
    • Mededelingen Afdeling Letterkunde KNAW (1998).
  • Member, Editorial Board:
    • Acta Psychologica
    • Psychologische Forschung (later Psychological Research)
    • Accident Analysis and Prevention
    • IATSS Research
    • Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Criminologie
    • European Journal of Cognitive Psychology
    • Behavioral Sciences and the Law
    • KronoScope: Journal for the Study of Time
  • Referee for a variety of journals, including Accident Analysis and Prevention, Acta Psychologica, American Journal of Psychology, Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Behavioral Sciences and the Law, Ergonomics, European Journal of Cognitive Psychology, IATSS Research, Journal of Experimental Psychology, Perception, Perception and Psychophysics, Psychological Research, Psychological Review.


  (b) Conference organization (selection)  

  • International Conference of Applied Psychology, Amsterdam (1968)
  • NUFFIC Summer School on Process Models for Cognition, The Hague (1972)
  • International Workshop on the Use of Instrumented Vehicles in Traffic Research, Soesterberg (1973)
  • Symposium Sociale Verkeerskunde, Groningen (1974)
  • International Conference of Applied Psychology, München (1978)
  • EEC-symposium ‘Dealing with Danger’, Gieten, Drenthe (1979)
  • Fourth European Conference on Behavioural Travel Demand Analysis (1981)
  • Third European Conference on Mobility Analysis and Prevention,Amsterdam (1983)
  • Fifth World Conference of the International Society for the Study of Time, Gargonza, Italy (1983)
  • International Workshop on Time, Mind, and Behaviour, Groningen (1984)
  • Inaugural Conference of the European Society for Cognitive Psychology (1985)
  • Sixth World Conference of the International Society for the Study of Time, Dartington Hall, UK (1986)
  • Second Conference of the European Society for Cognitive Psychology, Madrid (1987)
  • EuroSoar Symposium and Tutorial Workshop (1989)
  • ISIRT-ISST Round Tables (Apeldoorn, 1989, Stockholm, 1991, Toulouse, 1991)
  • UK Department of Transport Workshop on Future Directions in Traffic Safety (1990)
  • KNAW, Symposium  Information Technology for  Humanities, Behavioural and Social Sciences (1991)
  • Biopsychological and socio-cultural aspects of deviant behaviour, NSCR, Amsterdam (1996)
  • KNAW, Symposium Effectiveness of Criminal Justice in the War against Drugs, Amsterdam (1997)
  • Fourth World Conference on Injury Prevention and Control, Amsterdam (1998)
  • KNAW, Symposium on Bridges between Biological and Psychological Research, Amsterdam (1999)
  • KNAW, Symposium on the Future of Scientific Publishing, Amsterdam (2003)
  • KNAW, Symposium on Communication as a Cognitive Process, Amsterdam (2004)
  • Additionally: a considerable involvement in convening, chairing, discussing reporting, and/or evaluating conference sessions and other meetings, apart from regularly presenting papers at conferences.


(c) Invited lectures and keynote addresses (selection)

  • Carnegie-Mellon Annual Symposium on Cognition (1969)
  • NATO Summer School on Human Factors, Bellagio, Italy (1971)
  • Symposium Interdisciplinary Society of Biological Psychiatry 1972)
  • Tokyo Police Department (1973)
  • Attention and Performance VII, Sénanque, France (1976)
  • Honda Lectures (1977)
    •  IATSS Tokyo
    • Keio University
    • Chiba University
    • Kyoto University
    • University of Hokkaido
  • IATSS Symposium on Mobility for Man, Tokyo (1978)
  • UNESCO Workshop on ‘Time, Quality of Life and Social Development’, Bariloche, Argentina (1980)
  • Inaugural Symposium Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague (1982)
  • General Motors Symposium on Driver Performance Models (1984)
  • Royal Belgian Academy of Sciences and Humanities (1985)
  • International Society for the Study of Time (1986)
  • Carnegie Mellon University (1986)
  • General Motors Research Laboratories (1987)
  • Second International Conference of Traffic Safety (1987)
  • SWOV Symposium Amsterdam (1988)
  • Third Conference on Vision in Vehicles, Aachen (1989)
  • 22nd International Conference of Applied Psychology, Kyoto (1990)
  • Bundesanstalt für Strassenwesen, Aachen (1990)
  • KNAW Colloquium on The Consumption of Time and the Timing of Consumption (1990)
  • Instituto Suor Orsola Benincasa, Naples (1992)
  • Université de Liège, Workshop on Time and Dynamic Control of Behavior (November 1994)
  • Universität Regensburg, Symposium on Time Psychology (1994)
  • European Chapter Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (1995)
  • Sociaal Wetenschappelijke Raad (1995)
  • Simposio Internazionale sulla Psicologia del Tempo, San Marino (1996)
  • Royal Belgian Academy of Sciences and Humanities, Bicentenaire Adolphe Quetelet (1996)
  • University of Nebraska, Lincoln NE (1997)
  • Universität Regensburg-Erlangen (1997)
  • University of Melbourne (1997)
  • Australian National University, Canberra (1997)
  • Academia Europaea, Prague (2000)
  • International Society for the Study of Time, Gargonza, Italy (2002)
  • Scottish Bar Association, Edinburgh (2003)


(d) Consulting (selection)

Consulting activities have, over the years, covered various national and international organizations
including, in alphabetical order, the following:

  • Adviesraad Wetenschap en Technologie (AWT)
  • Conference of European Ministers of Transport (CEMT)
  • Donnelly Mirrors, Inc., Detroit, Michigan
  • Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam (EUR)
  • European Economic Community (EEC)
  • General Motors USA, Warren, Michigan
  • Goudappel & Coffeng, Deventer, The Netherlands
  • International Association for Traffic and Safety Sciences (IATSS)
  • Koninklijk Instituut van Ingenieurs (KIVI)
  • KPN Research, Leidschendam, The Netherlands
  • Netherlands Ministry of Transport and Public Works (VWS)
  • Netherlands Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science (OCW)
  • Netherlands Organization for Applied Research (TNO)
  • Netherlands Road Traffic Research Institute (SWOV)
  • Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
  • Raad voor het Maatschappelijk Onderzoek (RMO)
  • Royal Netherlands Touring Club (ANWB)
  • UK Cabinet Minister of Transport
  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
  • World Health Organization (WHO).