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Dutch Robotics Strategic Agenda

June 07, 2012

Dutch Robotics Strategic Agenda

The Dutch Robotics Agenda involves a short, middle and long term vision of the current status of robotics development in the Netherlands and how to move forward.

Robert Loos


Executive Summary

Robotics is booming! The Netherlands: don’t miss the train!

  • Global perspectives for robotics are optimistic.
  • Huge opportunity for the Netherlands to become an important global player in robotics.

Strengths and Opportunities

  • Large social need for robotics e.g. in healthcare due to the aging population and in agriculture due to shortage of labor.
  • Dutch universities are highly ranked in high-tech research and development and already have a large part of the technology needed available.
  • The Netherlands has a lot of innovative high-tech mechatronic engineering companies supplying components for the robotics industry.
  • The Netherlands has a worldwide leading position in milking robots.
  • The Netherlands has a positive innovation climate, with direct connections between companies and knowledge institutes.

Weaknesses and Threats

  • There are not enough engineers in the Netherlands.
  • There are not enough investors in robotics in the Netherlands.
  • In society there is skepticism about robotics. Social acceptance of robots is an issue.

How to seize the opportunity?

  • There is a shift from traditional industrial robots towards service robots.
  • More commercialization driven by valorization.
  • Improved technology, focusing on the interaction of humans with robots.
  • Technological breakthroughs in the field of 3D perception, motion/task programming, soft/compliant actuation, and cognitive learning algorithms.
  • Actions on safety, standardization, public awareness, and human capital.
  • More exchange of knowledge and collaboration within the robotics field, both between disciplines and between application fields.

Required Actions

  • Government: become launching customer of robots. Invest in start-up and spin-off companies; invest in robotics research & development as well as in coordination actions.
  • Societal institutions: stimulate the acceptance of robots e.g. by public debate and ‘free zones’.
  • Knowledge institutes: realize technological breakthroughs; perform research into social practices and relations; develop a safety framework for service robots.
  • Educational institutes: deliver more and better-educated students in robotics.
  • Companies: invest in care, cure, agro&food and professional service robotics; join forces in the whole value chain, of suppliers, robot producers and engineering firms; create business cases.
  • Community (RoboNED): stimulate knowledge exchange and collaboration.


Download the Strategic Agenda to read the full Roadmap.


Author(s)/Published by: Ir. D.J.B.A. Kranenburg - de Lange

Source: RoboNED
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