Join the Netherlands Community Accelerating Solutions in Maritime Innovation and Water Technology
Maritime and the Netherlands. Water technology and the Netherlands. Our country is regularly mentioned in the same breath as two industries undergoing technological revolutions. We are a leading country in accelerating water tech and maritime solutions of the future and invite international innovators to join our dynamic ecosystem.
- Rotterdam is the 2nd leading maritime city globally
- The Port of Rotterdam is the world’s No.1 smartest port, with plans to be carbon neutral by 2050
- WaterCampus Leeuwarden, with its European center of Excellence (Wetsus), is the hub for water technology in Europe
- The country is a hub of innovation, with digital twins, AI, and decentralized residential solutions pushing the boundaries of water technology – and robotics and drone applications reimagining maritime operations
Setting the course for a smart maritime future
The Netherlands is the maritime heart of Europe, with a multifaceted maritime industry powering groundbreaking maritime products and services of the future. Rotterdam region in particular is home to one of the most complete and competitive maritime clusters in the world. According to the The Dutch Maritime Network, the sector generates about 3.2% of the gross domestic product and 3% of the employment in the Netherlands.
The country’s focus on smart shipping, and using innovative digital and high-tech solutions, boost efficiency and reduce the industry’s carbon footprint. Not only benefiting ship owners, but the entire supply chain including key sectors such as Life Sciences and Health, High Tech and Logistics.
From the drive to zero emissions and digital and autonomous shipping, to safety, security and Blue Growth – the Netherlands is a top destination for organizations developing and integrating new maritime technologies at scale.
Within this innovation ecosystem, you will find collaboration at all levels; businesses, government and knowledge institutions are working closely together. Research institutes like TNO and Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN) and Deltares, and accelerators like PortXL open up opportunities for maritime tech companies all over the world that work on innovative solutions for water and maritime challenges. Not to mention the high-quality test facilities and field labs – like the historic shipyard of the Rotterdamsche Droogdok Maatschappij (RDM) – that offer space for innovative companies.
Rotterdam’s maritime ecosystem comprises key players in radar systems. Smart shipping expertise spans water predictions, cyber security, 3D printing and optimized route control. Robotics firms are pioneering automated maintenance and inspections. And there are cutting-edge businesses shaping future sustainability, including emission-free sailing and shipping, and other clean technologies.
Add a pipeline of 12,000 maritime and 23,500 engineering students across Scheepvaart en Transport College, Maritime Academy Harlingen, Delft University of Technology and Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences – and the link between talent, invention and delivery has never been stronger.
A water technology sector respected as a worldwide partner
The Dutch are leaders in integrated water management technologies that improve water supplies and sanitation. Sustainability is a key driver. Our large and dynamic WaterTech community is pioneering the cutting-edge technologies behind ever-better solutions.
Dutch innovation is advancing solutions for today’s drinking water, industrial water, wastewater, and purification industries. Water security for people, industry, and food production is one of the most urgent challenges of our time, and the expertise of the Dutch water sector covers the complete water cycle. A number of smart tech and materials companies have major operations in the Netherlands. And with government funding such as the Water Technology Growth Plan, the industry is primed for further expansion.
The sector is supported by Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP), a renowned alliance that actively promotes international collaboration and innovation in water management. Much of the work is centered around WaterCampus Leeuwarden –the world’s leading WaterTech campus with stellar names such as Wetsus (a research and innovation center for sustainable water technology) and Water Alliance.
Water Alliance, is a unique partnership of public and private companies, government agencies and knowledge institutes. It brings together a complete chain of innovation, developing first ideas and expanding into research and development. By harnessing the potential of specialized laboratories, a water application center and various demo sites, Water Alliance launches applications with international commercial companies.
Co-creating future-proof solutions in the Dutch maritime and water sectors
For those who work with and on water: the Netherlands is the place to shape the solutions of the future. The Netherlands welcomes international companies that are keen to accelerate innovation in maritime and water technology.