Journalist Tijs van den Boomen wrote the book Slim Zand (Smart Sand) about the expat community in Veldhoven in the province of Brabant that has sprung up over the past few decades around the foundation of ASML’ s head office. The Philips-based chip machines manufacturer currently employs 13,000 people from all over the world. His conclusions: a lot of people live in isolation, as they all have very different cultural backgrounds and all speak a different native language. And they don’t tend to become members of Brabant’s sports and social clubs. Something should be done about this, says Boomen. “Cohesion within this diversity will not just happen overnight. ”
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