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East Netherlands’ regions join forces in the field of AI

The Economic Board of the Arnhem-Nijmegen region, together with Wageningen, Twente Board and Oost NL join forces in an Artificial Intelligence strategy for the East Netherlands part of the country. Artificial Intelligence (AI) will define our future prosperity and well-being. The University of Twente participates with several research groups.

Already, Lifeport (the innovation network of the region Arnhem-Nijmegen, with Wageningen) and Twente have an ambitious agenda in the field of AI. With these combined forces, East Netherlands can make a substantial contribution to the AI-innovation strategy of the Netherlands. It also secures a strong national and international position, offers opportunities to raise funds in Europe and improves access to knowledge for the business community, thus strengthening (East) Netherlands’ competitive position.  

This is how both regions contribute to the innovative AI-ecosystem of the Netherlands and Europe. The collaboration focuses on two spearheads: AI for manufacturing, to strengthen the industry’s competitiveness through further digitalisation, and also AI for Health, to make health care future proof. Both spearheads are strategic themes of the Gelderland and Overijssel provinces.

Artificial Intelligence in East Netherlands

Over 170 companies in the East Netherlands, largely SMEs, are actively developing AI-applications. Examples can be found in the infographic Artificial Intelligence (AI) in East Netherlands. Jointly formulating a proposition for East Netherlands and an AI strategy ensures that national and European resources come within reach, such as the new EU-programs Digital Europe and Horizon Europe. This way, existing knowledge from universities and universities for applied science is marketed quicker - and companies can easier join (international) forces in innovating.

When it comes to AI, East Netherlands has a lot of knowledge. A pioneering role in this is field is taken by Radboud University, Radboudumc, Wageningen University & Research and Twente University. They want to collectively strengthen their expertise in the field of human centred AI, AI for manufacturing and integrated AI, in relation to the health, energy and agro/food scopes. Universities, universities of applied science and companies are collaborating intensively in this. Thus, expert knowledge is easily put into practice.

AI in East Netherlands: innovation driver to the Netherlands and Europe

In the coming months, the knowledge institutes Economic Board of the Arnhem-Nijmegen Region with Wageningen and Twente Board will further develop a widely shared strategy with all stakeholders, both public and private. An important building brick for this is Think East Netherlands, a collective of 24 regional partners that is giving AI a strong identity in a European context. With its powerful AI-ecosystem, East Netherlands is an important driver of AI-innovations in the Netherlands and Europe. The SMEs’ power, the many spin-offs, the strong networks and field labs such as Boost Smart Industry Network and Topfit, the ICAI-labs, and the close collaboration with Germany are but a few examples. 

Artificial Intelligence as key technology

Artificial Intelligence can be described as a system’s ability to correctly interpret external data, to learn from this data, and to use these lessons to realise specific targets and tasks through flexible adaptation.

Artificial Intelligence is seen as a key technology. Because of its wide applicability, AI-development impacts many business sectors and society as a whole. This offers vast economic possibilities. It makes AI a means to maintain and expand an international competitive position and to solve economic and social issues. Therefore, the Netherlands aim to build and maintain a strong and distinctive position in both the development and application of AI.

More about the University of Twente and AI: https://www.utwente.nl/en/digital-society/research/themes/data/ 

J.C. Vreeman (Jochem)
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