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Whitepaper Addressing Societal Challenges through More Effective Innovation Instruments

In a recently released whitepaper, experts from various knowledge organizations advocate for a revision of the Dutch innovation instrumentarium to foster collaborative innovation. They emphasize the need for a different approach to innovation and new forms of collaboration—essential for solving societal problems and stimulating economic viability.

During the “Transition to Transdisciplinary Research” conference on April 11, experts will engage with policymakers and other stakeholders to discuss their vision for this new innovation instrumentarium and refine it with valuable ideas from the field.


Mission-driven and Agile Innovation

Through six detailed observations, the whitepaper not only outlines the shortcomings of the current system but also defines the characteristics of an innovation instrumentarium that enables genuine systemic change.

The crux of the argument is that innovation schemes and financing instruments should align with mission-driven and agile forms of innovation. This entails a shift towards more transdisciplinary collaboration, focusing on adaptability and large-scale societal application. The whitepaper advocates for a necessary change in the innovation instrumentarium through experimentation and learning, supported by inspiring examples.

The need for such a change is underscored by the significant societal challenges faced by the Netherlands and Europe, including climate change, aging populations, and geopolitical tensions. Traditional innovation approaches are no longer sufficient to address these complex issues. The whitepaper and the dialogue event on April 11 specifically target policymakers and stakeholders involved in innovation policies and programs.


Join the Discussion on More Effective Innovation

On April 11, during the “Transition to Transdisciplinary Research” conference, we invite you to participate in a dialogue to discuss obstacles, opportunities, and concrete proposals to enhance the current innovation instrumentarium.

  • Discover why transdisciplinary science is crucial for innovation in the Netherlands, featuring insights from prominent experts such as Prof. Dr. Liesbeth Noordegraaf-Elens and Dr. Eppo Bruins.
  • Learn how transdisciplinary research is practically applied in Convergence projects, with concrete examples and experiences from researchers and partners.
  • Deepen your knowledge of establishing transdisciplinary programs and gain insights from professionals like Michiel van den Hout (Climate Program Netherlands) and Judith Schueler (ACCEZ) during parallel sessions.

The whitepaper “More Effective Innovation for Addressing Societal Challenges” is authored by Benjamin Schoemaker, Marianne Aalbersberg, and Jaap Lombaers from TNO, Ankie Bruens from Deltares, Michiel van den Hout from the Climate Research Initiative Netherlands, and Margo Strijbosch from Erasmus University Rotterdam.

Download the whitepaper in Dutch >


More Information

If you have inquiries about the “Transition to Transdisciplinary Research” conference, please reach out to Marije Wassenaar-Verschuur ( or Immanuel Nijssen (