High level visit to Amsterdam Science Park

On Monday 11 April thirty six foreign ambassadors from every corner of the world visited Amsterdam Science Park, the city’s knowledge hub with the largest concentration of beta science, education and entrepreneurship in Europe. Among the guests were the Science & Innovation Officer of Great Britain and the Director Economic Affairs of the German embassy. The visit was organized by the City of Amsterdam as part of the Dutch EU presidency in 2016.

As well as having a great record in science, Amsterdam is one of Europe’s most sustainable regions. As we all know, innovation is urgently needed to cope with climate change, population growth, and the other challenges currently facing the world. The ambassadors came to Amsterdam Science Park to experience sustainability innovation in action.

Amsterdam Green Campus

The delegates were welcomed by Prof. dr. Jos Baeten, Chairman of Amsterdam Science Park and Director of the National Research Institute for Mathematics and Computer Science (CWI). Prof. dr. Michel Haring Professor of Plant Physiology introduced the Amsterdam Green Campus, a joint initiative of the University of Amsterdam and the Food & Flower sector in the Amsterdam Area.

“The Amsterdam Metropolitan Area is home to the largest conglomerate of vegetable and ornamental plant breeding industry. The Amsterdam Green Campus is the regional hub that connects research and education to industry and policymakers.” - Michel Haring

Taste of innovation

The Netherlands produces the seeds for around 60 per cent of the vegetables grown around the world. During this interactive site visit, special attention was given to green technologies such as DNA sequencing. This technique can develop new plants more rapidly, which are resistant to disease and which can cope with climate change. The collaboration in the Amsterdam Green Campus enables knowledge overspill from university to small and medium size enterprises. The ambassadors were invited to literally take a taste of this collaboration by participating in a strawberry taste contest, organized by Plantum, the Dutch association for the plant reproduction material sector.  

“Amsterdam has won the iCapital award  for being the most innovative city of this moment in Europe. Amsterdam was recognised, among others, for the way city officials approach innovation issues. The city participates and invests in many collaborations were innovation and business meet. Amsterdam Science Park is one of them and a prime example of collaborative innovation.”  - Juliane Kürschner, Policy Advisor Europe, City of Amsterdam