The purpose of the NAE is to foster a vibrant and effective climate of responsible, inclusive, and impactful engineering-based innovation, rooted in a world-class knowledge and talent base in technological sciences and human centric design. It also strives to make the voice of engineering better heard among key decision makers. It will do so by offering a forum for constructive debate, by orchestrating the pivot to action, and by providing advice on urgent strategic challenges and necessary improvements to the Dutch knowledge and innovation system.
The NAE positions itself as spider in the web of the knowledge and innovation ecosystem, connecting engineers and innovators at knowledge institutes, established and start-up companies, and governmental bodies, sharing the conviction that engineering-based innovation is key to create and deploy solutions that address pressing societal issues and transitions.
The NAE strives to address systemic improvements in the knowledge and innovation ecosystem. This encompasses topics such as human capital, internationalization, valorization, improving the climate for start-ups to thrive, and ensuring a more effective orchestration of public-private partnerships.
NAE will also conduct deep dives into specific strategic innovation topics including how to come to more effective approaches through engineering-based innovation to societal challenges like health, climate, environment, energy transition, circular economy, agriculture and food, drinking water, and water management. NAE will also participate in the formulation of key-enabling technology strategies and best practices.
NAE will help positioning the Netherlands versus European initiatives and policies (such as currently the European Chips Act, data access, cloud sovereignty, the AI Act) through membership of international associations of academies of engineering.
NAE is a not-for-profit organization. In taking a position on issues, as a representative voice of the engineering community in the Netherlands, NAE will be objective and non-political, ensuring a solid applied science and engineering underpinning, and focusing on what is best for society at large and for the Dutch knowledge and innovation ecosystem in particular.
A forum for constructive debate Orchestrating the pivot to action Offering advice
Societal Challengess and Transitions
Engineering, human centric design, and the underlying technical sciences will clearly have to be at the heart of innovative solutions for most of the pressing societal challenges and transitions – whether it is about climate change, or safeguarding equitable access to energy, water, food, and healthcare. While there are many pockets of excellence in the Netherlands, the effectiveness of our knowledge and innovation ecosystem needs to improve, and we need orchestrated action to be able to tackle these challenges, to safeguard our quality of living, the sustainability of our environment, and to remain economically competitive in the European and global context.
Issues to be addressed include systemic improvements in the knowledge and innovation ecosystem such as the need to ensure appropriate funding and recognition of foundational technical sciences and human capital, valorization, spinning out IP, VC money for startups, PPP orchestration and financing, as well as specific innovation strategy issues and initiatives to be taken (such as currently how to position the Netherlands versus the European Chips Act or other big EU themes like data access, cloud sovereignty, and the AI Act). Engineering is at the heart of innovative solutions for many fields, as recognized also in the Mission-driven Topsector and Innovation Policy (MTIB), with their Knowledge and Innovation Agendas for the improvement of the earning power of the Netherlands, and the approach to address societal challenges, and the role of key technologies therein. Given the breadth of engineering-based knowledge and innovation, the NAE will choose what to focus on in its annual agenda, taking into account input from key stakeholders.