Partners sign cooperation agreement concerning big data

On 4 September in Berkel-Enschot, the Eindhoven University of Technology, Tilburg University, the Municipality of ’s-Hertogenbosch and the Provincial Government of Noord-Brabant signed a cooperation agreement in the field of big data. The intentions outlined included the founding of a new university study programme for master’s and post-master’s-level data scientists.

Societal digitisation is producing heretofore unimaginable quantities of data on, for instance, the use of products, the status of machines, clients, bodies, groups of people, transport and energy flows. This data offers large scale opportunities for the solution of societal problems. Furthermore, the data provides new economic opportunities for companies.

By investing a total of forty million euros in this graduate school, Brabant will gain a decisive head start in the field of ICT-driven innovation. The intended new location for part of this study programme, which is scheduled to commence in 2016, is the former convent Mariënburg in ’s-Hertogenbosch.

Every partner will invest ten million euros in the graduate school, subject to approval from the Municipal Council of ’s-Hertogenbosch, the Provincial Executive of Noord-Brabant, the Supervisory Board of the Eindhoven University of Technology and the Board of the Foundation behind Tilburg University as well as that of both universities’ works councils.

The investing parties have committed to making efforts to strengthen education, research and business development in the field of big data. By setting up new forms of cooperation, they wish to gain a crucial advantage. The Big Data Value Association states that big data will provide a billion euro market in new European sales opportunities.

The four parties presented their plans on 4 September at the annual Koningshoeven meeting at which policymakers from Brabant meet at an abbey in Berkel-Enschot. Both universities will jointly provide bachelor education and master’s study programmes in the field of data science. This will partly take place on their own campuses and partly at a new, shared location in ’s-Hertogenbosch (the Mariënburg convent).

The combination of technical sciences (TU/e) and the humanities and social sciences (Tilburg University) will broaden expertise, making the joint initiative unique in Europe. Tilburg University has programmes that cover legal, government and economic aspects as well as entrepreneurship. The Eindhoven University of Technology will provide the IT side of data science and experience in entrepreneurship.

Alongside education and research, the location in ’s-Hertogenbosch will focus on facilitating start-ups, in-company training, masterclasses, events and conferences.

Source: TU/e press team

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