We hope that you’ve started 2018 with a bang! 2017 was a great year for the SingularityU NL community. In this newsletter we would like to share some of the amazing highlights. We’re looking forward to spending another year, accelerating on this exponential curve, together with you.

Be the Change.

Technological disruption is affecting every part of our lives; every business, every industry, our society – even what it means to be “human.” These changes are accelerating rapidly, which means we’re encountering some of the greatest transitions that any generation has ever had to face.

We – as human beings – have an essential role to play in this. Making sure that these technologies are used in a positive way, solving our grandest challenges in the process. This is why we started our ‘Be the Change‘ motto in 2017, showing that each of you can make a difference, each of you can start a movement of positive change. To extend our reach, we’ve focused on three main goals.

  1. Stimulate active citizenship by discussing how we should use technology in our society.
  2. Inform policy makers about the potential and effects of exponential technologies.
  3. Minimize the negative effects of creative destruction by supporting companies in dealing with these developments.


Stimulating active citizenship.

Get into the Future – When discussing what world we want to create together, it is important to have everyone at the table. One of our key goals is to reach a broader audience – a reflection of our society – and inform them about the impact of exponential technologies. With this goal in mind we collaborated with our partner TMG to create multiple specials (special 1, special 2) and a magazine (all in Dutch). We also curated speakers and technology partners for the second edition of Get into the Future.

SingularityU NL Summit – For our third Summit, we implemented our ‘inclusive convergence’ program. We didn’t just curate the program, we also curated our audience to create a mix of change makers and game changers connecting with our ‘Be the Change’ motto. The 800 attendees enjoyed two full days of inspirational talks, personal stories and deep dives by 30 speakers, including our local faculty and International speakers such as Nathaniel Calhoun, Shiza Shahid and David Roberts. There were also 30+ technologies to experience at our expo (Executive Summaryrecap, photos, trailer & promos).

Global Impact Challenge – We challenged people in The Netherlands to come up with solutions to prevent or mitigate the effects of climate change. We provided winners Jonathan Breemhaar and Lex Hoefsloot with a full scholarship to attend the 9-week transformational Global Solutions Program at the NASA Research Park in Silicon Valley, joining a selection of bright minds from all over the world. Both winners working towards a sustainable future. Jonathan is creating a scalable manufacturing process for in vitro meat production. Lex is building self-charging solar cars. You might have seen him on DWDD.

SingularityU NL Community – Our Meetup community grew to 2100+ members in 2017, with multiple (mostly) free events held by our community in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Nijmegen, including topics about The Future of Cities, Happiness, Cybersecurity and Health. These events are accessible for anyone interested in exponential technologies.

Programs for students – Of course we did many more, especially focussing on our future change makers: students. We collaborated on a Minor with Fontys University of Applied Sciences, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with The Maastricht School of Management to collaborate on education programs and held sessions at, amongst others, the University of Amsterdam and the Avans University of Applied Sciences.

800+ game changers and change makers joined our Summit in Haarlem.

GIC winners Lex Hoefsloot & Jonathan Breemhaar won a 9-week scholarship to Silicon Valley.

Informing policy makers.

Leaders of the Future – The first edition of our Executive Program, Leaders of the Future, was held in 2017. This very intense and immersive learning experience was aimed enabling game changers and change makers to be the leaders needed in this time of exponential change. 40 Individuals joined, not only from corporates, but also from public institutions and governments. Infused with the knowledge or our esteemed faculty and guided by our skilled facilitators, they created their possible future scenarios. They’re now guiding their organization into the future. Watch the aftermovie to hear their personal experiences.

Ministry of Defence – The Dutch Ministry of Defence has created a year long learning program to develop their future leaders. We facilitated the kick-off for 50 of these leaders. During two fully immersive days, we helped them understand the future, discover opportunities for innovation, helped transform their thinking radically and learned them how to be exponential leaders.

Municipalities – We organized multiple creative sessions with municipalities and policy makers, including ‘s-Hertogenbosch, to share the potential and effects of exponential technologies. Members of our team also had a private session with the new Mayor of Eindhoven, John Jorritsma.


Supporting transition in companies.

Custom Programs

Essent-innogy – As a leading player in the energy space, Essent-innogy is making sure to maintain a leading role in the energy transition and the European energy market. We had the honor to host their top 300 for a 2-day immersive program to explore the future of energy and how they can leverage the tools that the exponential age offers.

Hub Events – Several trailblazing organizations such as ING, Philips, Aegon and Hillenraad have chosen our Innovation Hub as a location for their innovation events. We provided them with an introduction to exponential thinking, discussions and technological experiences.

Faculty – For all our programs, including custom programs, we work together with some of the best technological experts, entrepreneurs and practitioners. In 2017, we had eight new faculty members joining us. We’re proud that they’ve also gone international, speaking at Summits in Germany, Denmark, South-Africa, Australia and upcoming Summits in Czech Republic and Chile. They also take part in programs of Singularity University, such as Exponential Health, Exponential Manufacturing and Executive Programs.

In 2018, we’ll be doing many more of these programs for corporate and institutional innovators. Would you like to know how a custom program can take your organization to the next level? Email us at programs@singularityunl.org for the options.