In collaboration with several educational institutions and companies in the Northern Netherlands, the Province of Groningen is presenting ‘Cybersecurity Noord-Nederland’. This programme aims to better protect the business world from cyber-attacks and thereby make society safer, as well as to stimulate innovation in the North and create more employment. The ‘Cybersecurity Noord-Nederland’ programme will run for four years and cost over € 6 million. The University of Groningen will act as coordinator of the programme, and the Province will contribute over € 3 million.
The initiative is designed to meet the opportunities and challenges posed by today’s increasingly digitized society. For example, criminals increasingly operate in digital ways and more and more household appliances are connected to the internet. Educational institutions and companies have no other choice but to increase their knowledge of digital security. The programme will focus on conducting research into cyber security and developing new degree programmes at senior secondary vocational education (MBO), university of applied sciences (HBO) and university (WO) levels. The available resources will be spent, among other matters, on a Chair and on PhD research at the Faculty of Law of the University of Groningen.
Jan Berend Wezeman, Dean of the Faculty of Law, said: ‘This programme will enable the Faculty to collaborate with both private and public partners in the region and will provide a unique opportunity to continue to deepen and share our knowledge in the field of digital security in the coming years’.
Entrepreneurs will be able to use the new knowledge acquired through the programme to develop new, digitally secure products and services. The programme will offer professional support to make companies more resilient against cyber-attacks. In addition, a testing facility will be established where companies can extensively test their new products to make sure that they are completely safe and secure when brought to market.
Digital developments, such as issues related to cyber-security and cyber-crime, are receiving increasing attention within both the teaching and the research conducted at the Faculty of Law. In September 2018, the Faculty started a new English-taught Master’s degree programme in Governance and Law in Digital Society, which focuses on law, governance and the security issues that are the result of digitization. In addition, Dutch-taught Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programmes in IT Law have been offered for some time now.
The Security, Technology and e-Privacy ( STeP ) expertise centre was established to promote research in this field. In recent years, the research group has succeeded in acquiring European funding for its cyber security research, for example through the Marie Sklodowska-Curie ESSENTIAL programme.
In addition to the University of Groningen, the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen, Noorderpoort, the Alfa College and Qbit also act as partners in the programme.
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