– Q: Age is no guarantee of efficiency.
– James Bond: And youth is no guarantee of innovation
The conversation above shows one of the more critical problems of our time. We need to model our society towards a more innovative model and hence projects as TEDxBinnenhof are very much needed. Connecting an old bastion as the Ministry of Economic Affairs with young and old innovative entrepreneurs is in my opinion very important to reach that goal.
I once started a Bachelors in Business Administration when I was 18 years old, but due to a failure to achieve the required number of ECTS, I had to quit BA. Instead of continuing with Economics or anything else in that direction (like so many students decide to do), I decided to completely shift the focus of my studies towards the public field. I did my bachelors at the Erasmus University and quickly found out that the economic courses I followed were far more interesting to me than the sociological or law-related courses. In my third year I followed a minor on the specific economic and business-crises that happened over the years and from this minor two main points of interest followed: The financial crisis and the 70s/80s governmental business-support-crisis. I wrote my bachelor-thesis on the European mechanism that now is in place to supervise banks and I’m currently writing my master thesis on how the Ministry of Economic Affairs changed from supporting big industry to supporting what I like to call “big innovation”. It was initially also due to that subject that I wanted to do an internship at the Ministry and only by coincidence (as often is the case in this life), I ended up at TEDxBinnenhof.
I am very excited about everything that is happening at the moment. We just had the European Final in Luxembourg and it was so nice to see that Europeans also gather for positive developments in this world. I’m really looking forward to the 31st of March to gather all policy makers, captains of industry and primarily entrepreneurs in The Hague and see which connections could possibly be made between and within those groups. I firmly believe that, even more important than the invention itself is the environment in which the invention is made. Both public and private actors must learn not to fear innovation, but to embrace it and to act upon it. Secondly, we need to realise that it probably won’t be either government or enterprises alone that will solve all the challenges that exist in this world. We need to partner up with each other and make sure we will leave this planet with a rich future for all and not only with a rich history. TEDxBinnenhof will hopefully bring the Dutch and perhaps even parts of the European community closer to that goal. That is what I strive for and that’s why I am where I am now.