The Corps Diplomatique visited Eindhoven. Last Tuesday over fifty ambassadors from over the world made a trip passed ASML, High Tech Campus and Dutch Design Week on invitation by Brainport. Goal: to put the spotlight on the strengths and the international position of the Brainport-region.
“To Denmark, the Dutch are partners rather than competition”, Danis ambassador Ole Emil Moesby says. According to Moesby, the Dutch and Danish have some economical similarities.
“Both countries have little natural resources to build an industry on. We rely largely on what’s between the ears: knowledge. In Denmark, we take a close look towards what is happening in the Netherlands. In the past years we have taken notice and saw what has been built up from the ground here.”
According to Moesby, Denmark seems, in comparison to the Netherlands, preoccupied with protecting its intellectual capital. “We are so focused on maintaining leadership, that is easy to forget about innovation. In Brainport, there is no shortage of that.”
In denmark we take a close look at what is happening in the Netherlands.
“There is another difference between our knowledge-economies”, says Moesby. “Over here, government, industry and universities collaborate very closely. That is something we don’t nearly see enough in Denmark.”
Dirk Brengelmann, the German ambassador, sees the same as his Danish colleague. However, he does see a difference in the way research and innovation is funded. “In Germany, government invests more in research. Over here, the money more often flows from industry.”
According to Brengelmann, each has its pros and cons. “State-funded research can account for a longer research trajectory and doesn’t always have to result in something that can be marketed. Which leaves the research more open to innovation and creativity. The downside is that the research can stay to vague.”
Something that also stood out to the German ambassador was how many different countries were involved in the work that is done in Eindhoven. “Germany delivers about thirty percent of the supplies needed by ASML. I have never thought of that before.”
The Bulgarian ambassador was mainly suprised by something the mayor of Veldhoven told him upon visting ASML, earlier on the day. “35 years ago, none of this was here, and now there is an knowledge based ecosystem which can be named between places like Sillicon valley and Shanghai.”
The ambassador would like to advise his home country to invest in education on specific areas. “Much like that happened here in High Tech and Design.”
In total the Corps Diplomatique exists out of a group of about 70 ambassadors from over the world. All of the ambassadors operate from the city of The Hague.