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Our collaboration

Part of the smart

We believe in content and gladly share our knowledge. We do this by organising honours programmes and high-tech safaris for students, to give them a better insight into our business activities. We also host special career and development programmes for graduates and supervise high-tech start-ups.

Our companies jointly use a high-tech Shared Facility Centre with industrial 3D printers for metal and plastic, and cobots. This is where we host our workshops for R&D projects, and where our development and testing facilities for 3D printing and auditoriums for school and student programmes are located.

Big 5

We work together on providing solutions for the future, by combining our 'Big 5' of high-tech: robotics, metal 3D printing, remote sensing and big data, visual intelligence and renewable propulsion. A few examples:

  • A healthy living environment, through renewable energy and smart solutions for reducing fossil fuel in transport.
    Remote sensing and big data; remotely connecting devices, instruments and machines to collect, transfer, store, analyse and act on data.
  • Healthy and safe food for everyone, by using sensors and big data to monitor and improve the quality of food and drinks. Visual intelligence; a unique combination of camera techniques, big data and neural networks.
  • Better healthcare, helping doctors to recognize diseases faster and better by using smart software.
  • A safer society, in which visual intelligence and big data help prevent child pornography and terrorist attacks.
  • Healthy working conditions, by making work cleaner, safer and easier with 3D printing and robots.

Together we create more than 50 new products a year worldwide, which contribute to society in the areas of safety, simplifying the operation of complex systems, providing access to data that improve food quality, and tailoring them to individual consumer needs.

Smart Industry Hub

We stimulate digitalisation of companies in the northern region. For this purpose, we use our skills lab, which is part of the Smart Industry Hub Northern Netherlands. Here we help large and small companies improve their products, services and processes by showing them the benefits of 3D printing, remote sensing & big data, vision & deep learning and robotics. These technologies form the basis for co-creation with other disciplines, research, open innovation and education. This way, business and growth are aligned with sustainable development.

We accelerate digitalisation of our regional economy through the following tracks:

• ‘Go Digital': companies become more aware of digitalisation and the related competencies;
• 'Play the Champions League': we connect our frontrunners with EU innovation programmes and share our competencies with other Dutch regions;
• 'Create and share talents and competencies': with three demo factories or skills labs;
• Private Public Partnership (PPP), which is a non-profit partnership.

Part of the smart

Working at a company within Innovatiecluster Drachten means contributing to solutions for the future. More than 3,500 motivated professionals, from academics to production workers, have chosen a career in the high-tech industry with us. They work together in developing premium and unique products by sharing their knowledge, while producing these products in their own company. Our companies have clearly set aside competition to make way for cooperation.

'Part of the smart'

In addition to the focus on private R&D in Northern Netherlands, we are a high-tech manufacturing industry that is unique for North-Western Europe. It attracts people who want to build their career in a future-oriented high-tech industry. It is also attractive for high-tech companies that can gain a competitive edge by sharing knowledge and making use of each other's facilities.

Knowledge exchange

Knowledge exchange is the basis of our collaboration. This also attracts the attention of schools. University of Groningen, University of Twente, the northern universities of applied sciences NHL/Stenden, Hanze University of Applied Sciences and ROC Friese Poort, Friesland College and Drenthe College have now joined in. Not only for their students to conduct research, but also to gain work experience through an internship in a high-quality technical environment. In addition, we run facility-sharing programmes, special career and talent development programmes for both secondary vocational education (MBO) and higher education (HBO/university) graduates, and we supervise high-tech start-ups.

Knowledge

Knowledge exchange is the basis of our collaboration. This also attracts the attention of schools. University of Groningen, University of Twente, the northern universities of applied sciences NHL/Stenden, Hanze University of Applied Sciences and ROC Friese Poort, Friesland College and Drenthe College have now joined in. Not only for their students to conduct research, but also to gain work experience through an internship in a high-quality technical environment. In addition, we run facility-sharing programmes, special career and talent development programmes for both secondary vocational education (MBO) and higher education (HBO/university) graduates, and we supervise high-tech start-ups.