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Generous subsidy for Groningen-based Transport and Mobility innovation network pilot

05 July 2019

SMiLES all round: a transport and mobility innovation network pilot is about to be launched by a collaborative group comprising the University of Groningen, the Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Noorderpoort and 18 regional partners. The initiative has been made possible by a generous subsidy from the NWO (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research) and TKI Dinalog (Dutch Institute for Advanced Logistics). This living lab, to be known by its acronym SMiLES (Shared connectivity in Mobility and Logistics Enable Sustainability), will focus on open mobility and logistics networks building on concepts of the sharing economy. SMiLES will fall under the hive.mobility development centre, opened in Groningen on 4 July. SMiLES is one of eight nationally assigned transport and mobility projects. NWO has yet to announce the exact subsidy amount.

The platform will develop new knowledge and test and validate concepts through public-private collaboration. The Northern region, with its combination of urban and rural areas and islands, provides a unique setting for this integrated approach. We will be studying the role of new technology, behavioural factors, ethical standards and the relevant legal frameworks, as well as developing business and organization models within sub-networks. An interdisciplinary research team comprising 16 researchers from seven different UG faculties and the Hanze University of Applied Science’s User-Centered Design group will be joining forces to address these issues.

The following organisations will also be involved in addition to the educational institutions already mentioned: Province of Groningen, Municipality of Groningen, Arriva, Qbuzz, OV Bureau Groningen Drenthe, Bidfood, Groningen Bereikbaar, Haven Lauwersoog, Horus View and Explore, Koopman Logistics Group, New Energy Coalition Foundation, New Generation Shipyards, Vinturas, Wagenborg, Suikerunie, KPN, Natuur & Milieu and 5Groningen.

Alongside its research and concept development activities, the experimentation platform will also devote considerable energy to the nurturing of young talent, challenging students in all levels of further and higher education to engage in collaborative problem-solving activities. Newly acquired knowledge will be shared more widely via hive.mobility.

For further information, send an email to Prof. Iris Vis, Dean of Industry Relations at or call her on +31 (0)50 3634508.

Last modified:12 March 2020 9.43 p.m.
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