On 4 September 2015, Tilburg University, the Eindhoven University of Technology, the Municipality of ‘s-Hertogenbosch and the Provincial Government of Noord-Brabant signed a cooperation agreement in the field of Big Data.
The intentions outlined include the founding of a new university study programme for master’s and post-master’s-level data scientists. Societal digitisation is producing unimaginable quantities of data on, for instance, the use of products, clients, groups of people, transport and energy flows. This data offers large scale opportunities for the solution of societal problems. Furthermore, the data could provide new economic opportunities for companies. By investing a total of € 40 million in this graduate school, Brabant will gain a decisive head start in the field of ICT-driven innovation. The intended new location for part of this study programme, which is scheduled to commence in 2016, is the former convent Mariënburg in Den Bosch.
Every partner will invest € 10 million in the graduate school, subject to approval from various boards and councils.
The investment has the potential to develop into a new, internationally appealing pillar of Dutch economy in the triangle between ‘s-Hertogenbosch – Tilburg – Eindhoven. By setting up new forms of cooperation, the four partners from Brabant wish to gain a crucial advantage.
The Big Data Value Association states that big data will provide a billion euro market in new European sales opportunities.
Tlburg and Eindhoven universities will jointly provide bachelor education and master’s study programmes in the field of data science. This will partly take place on their own campuses and partly at a new, shared location in Den Bosch.
The study programmes are a response to the increased demand for data scientists. Around the world, data science is viewed as the field of the future. The quantity of data produced and its importance has increased exponentially in recent decades. There is huge demand for people with specialised knowledge. Data science can be viewed as the technological backbone for countless ICT innovations for solving societal problems in the fields of energy, healthcare and mobility. Investing in the graduate school will give Brabant a decisive advantage in the field of ICT-driven innovation.
These are the new study programmes and tracks: a joint Bachelor Data Science at TU/e and Tilburg University, a joint Master Data Entrepreneurship as part of the Mariënburg Graduate School Data Entrepreneurship (including a post-master’s study programme) in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, a special master’s programme Data Science Engineering at TU/e and a special master’s programme Data Science Business & Society at Tilburg University.
The combination of technical sciences (TU/e) and the humanities and social sciences (Tilburg University) will broaden expertise, making the joint initiative unique in Europe. Tilburg University has programmes that cover legal, government and economic aspects as well as entrepreneurship. The Eindhoven University of Technology will provide the IT side of data science and experience in entrepreneurship.
Alongside education and research, the location in ‘s-Hertogenbosch will focus on facilitating start-ups, in-company training, masterclasses, events and conferences.