Olaf Schouten is a surgical research fellow at Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, the Netherlands, under the supervision of professor Don Poldermans. The principal focus of his research is the identification and treatment of patients at cardiovascular risk prior to, during, and after surgery. He is a member of the Dutch Society of Surgery, European Society for Vascular Surgery and the Society for Perioperative Assessment and Quality Improvement. He has presented more than 25 abstracts at International Scientific Meetings, has authored more than 40 manuscripts in several peer-reviewed journals, and is a reviewer for the European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery. Dr Schouten received his medical degree at the Erasmus Medical Centre in 2002 and will commence his specialist training in surgery in 2007.