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Strong Northern Netherlands works with water

The Northern Netherlands is working on solutions for global water issues, such as the removal of medicine residues, the desalination of sea water, the reuse of water, the production of biodegradable bio-plastics, blue energy and the storage of energy in green batteries. To achieve this we use research, knowledge valorisation and the promotion of business activity. This involves intensive collaboration on WaterCampus Leeuwarden with companies and research institutes from all over Europe. WaterCampus conducts innovative research using a collaborative, business-driven approach.

This tried and tested PPP collaboration model results in more relevant scientific research, faster valorisation and new business activity, in which breakthrough technologies form the basis for new start-ups. The Northern Netherlands also ensures that companies are linked to the global market. In terms of water education, the focus is on ensuring a match between educational programmes (senior secondary and higher vocational education) and the labour market, now and into the future. The global demand for water technology will increase significantly in the coming years. This offers opportunities for the Northern Netherlands, as a leader in the field of water, to further build on its successes and contribute to the societal challenges relating to water, both within and outside of Europe.

The EU can contribute to this by:

  • Offering opportunities for smaller European Partnerships in Horizon Europe, allowing bottom-up initiatives to contribute on a European scale
  • Developing instruments for European Innovation Ecosystems
  • Creating the right conditions that will further facilitate the combination of regional, national and European funds
  • Allowing regions to use structural funds for the maintenance of research facilities, which is essential, particularly in regions without a traditional university
  • Actively supporting the Centres of Vocational Excellence initiative in Erasmus+
  • Designing environmental regulations in such a way that breakthrough technologies can be brought to the market faster.

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