The Dutch government must invest €60,000,000 annually in the Brainport Region.
That’s to maintain the area’s global position as a knowledge and innovation hub. The region must also be designated as a ‘Key Project’. That’s the essence of a letter that Brainport Eindhoven presented to the Parliamentary Committee of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate.
The letter was also presented to informateur Tjeenk Willink and the parliamentary party chairmen of the Lower House.
The €60 million should be invested in new innovations in which technology is developed that can contribute to solving social issues. These include the development of a new generation of batteries, developments in 3D printing and programmes to train technical talent.
Moreover, according to Brainport the region deserves the name of Key Project, which means that the state must invest extra in upscaling. The expectation is that 70,000 jobs will be created in the region in the coming years. In addition, more than 60,000 homes need to be built and the pressure on the area’s accessibility is increasing.
Many other cities and regions in the Netherlands had previously received support from the government through Key Projects. According to Brainport, these figures and the importance of the area to the Netherlands justify ‘strong incentives’. In addition to investing in Brainport, The State must also invest in other innovation ecosystems in the country.
“Brainport is a proven success, and we must embed this approach more deeply as well as expand it in the Netherlands,” Brainport Foundation chairman and Mayor of Eindhoven, John Jorritsma, says. “The structural support of Brainport by the state is important for the coming years and for maintaining prosperity in the future”.
Hans de Jong, Managing Director of Philips Nederland also argues for more financial resources for the region. “Maintaining broad prosperity requires growth, competitiveness and therefore investment in new key technologies and public-private innovation programmes. It’s also important to financially support a limited number of innovative ecosystems, including Brainport. This is how we lay the new foundations for the national earning power”.
“The successful cooperation with the state on the basis of the Brainport National Action Agenda has now been in place for several years and it’s time for new focuses. After all, the world around us isn’t standing still, a strong impulse in innovation is sorely needed, and the state must continue to invest in Brainport Eindhoven if we want to maintain and increase our contribution to transitions, activity, export and employment”, Brainport says.
‘The only raw material we have’
To add weight to its plea, Brainport gives a number of examples of striking success stories from the region. Such as the Lightyear solar car, Solid, which is developing iron powder as a sustainable fuel, and the development of photonic chips.
“It is therefore not without reason that the future innovation policy of the Dutch government is based on strengthening existing innovation ecosystems such as Brainport and establishing new ones”, TU/e chairman, Robert-Jan Smits, says. “Only in this way can we secure the future earning power of the Netherlands. Let’s not forget that with the closing of the gas tap, knowledge is the only raw material we have left”.
Translated by: Bob