Ask The Community: How do you Collaborate with Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management?

During the NL Space Campus Network & Drinks in March 2024, Rike van Hattem, International Policy Officer at the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (I&W), shared insights on collaborating with the Ministry. Working in the space cluster, Rike van Hattem focusses on enhancing the use of satellite navigation and earth observation for governmental purposes, making her a key contact for those interested in these areas.

When asked about the process of collaboration, Rike explained that there’s no formal procedure in place: ‘If you have an idea for a project, you need to contact someone from the ministry who might be interested. How to do that? My first advice would be to build a network with people from the ministry. It’s my job to stimulate the use of satellite data, and you can always contact me. Feel free to do so, and I’ll try to find you someone who might like to collaborate’.

However, Rike acknowledged a common challenge: funding. While resources are available, proposals must align with the ministry’s policy priorities to secure support: ‘So to conclude, build a network, try to contact me, and be patient, because collaborating with the government takes time’.

Another easy way to build a network with the ministry and collaborate is to join events organised by the ministry, such as the future Geo-Data Fusion Hackathon coming up in June. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (I&W), in collaboration with NL Space Campus, Netherlands Space Office (NSO), and Rijkswaterstaat, is organising the first edition of the Geo-Data Fusion Hackathon focused on solving policy challenges with satellite data. Participating teams get a chance to receive an order of €10,000 to €20,000 for further development of the solution. You can register and find more information on the website events.nlspacecampus.eu/geodatafusionhackathon2024

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