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Key Enabling Technologies

Key Enabling Technologies

Digitalisation is an important factor driving innovation and economic growth in the Netherlands. As society faces numerous challenges, many of those challenges – including the energy transition, safety and healthcare – require vast amounts of new technology, and sooner rather than later.

This page describes five promising key enabling technologies for Topsector ICT.


Frits Grotenhuis


Topsector ICT

Key enabling technologies are technologies that offer broad applications across multiple sectors of the economy. Often, they are the factors driving important innovations. dutch digital delta has identified five key areas for Topsector ICT: Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, Blockchain, Cybersecurity and Future Network Services. What these technologies have in common is that they are all evolving at a lightning pace. Another feature that these technologies share is that they offer ample potential for solving the challenges facing society, or making vital contributions to the economy, by generating new economic activity and developing new markets. These key enabling technologies affect how we live, work, learn and innovate.

Mission-driven innovation

The Dutch government has formulated a Mission-Driven Topsectors and Innovation Policy. This policy challenges the business community, the scientific community, social organisations and newcomers to work together to solve important issues. How can we make sure that everyone has access to healthcare, and can afford it? How can we stop climate change? How do we turn waste into valuable resources? Creating solutions to these issues takes time and money, so companies, scientists, government agencies and as many new challengers as possible are working together in public-private consortiums. This Dutch approach is unique worldwide, with partners working together to identify groundbreaking innovations and develop solutions drawing on the latest scientific findings and key enabling technologies.

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has long since ceased to be science fiction. AI is everywhere and has a major impact on our daily lives, just think of virtual assistants and chatbots, smart games and self-driving cars. But al...

More about Artificial Intelligence

Big Data

Everyone is online nowadays, in every aspect of their lives. This has produced an explosive increase in the amount of data that we generate: customer data, sales data, medical files, tax returns: these are just a few examp...

More about Big Data


Blockchain is going to change the future. Not for nothing is it one of the key areas of dutch digital delta. The Netherlands wants to accelerate the decentralisation of digital infrastructure with Blockchain and has the am...

More about Blockchain


Cybercriminals are using increasingly sophisticated techniques to invade and undermine digitised society. If organisations are to continue to rely on secure and robust ICT systems, networks and services in the future, they...

More about Cybersecurity

Future Network Services

The Netherlands is strong in harnessing digital technology for economic and societal growth. In recent decades, an estimated 20% to 40% of the Netherlands' economic growth has come from telecommunications and ICT. This can...

More about Future Network Services

Cross-sectoral connections

Every sector of the economy, and every Topsector, faces its own particular ICT challenges. At the same time, many of those challenges are connected. An ICT solution that is applied successfully in one sector might also help with a problem in another sector, or add other value. The goal of dutch digital delta is to convert these cross-sectoral connections into opportunities to utilise them more effectively, and so make optimum use of ICT innovations not only now but in the future as well. Besides boosting the Dutch economy, this also presents solutions to help overcome major societal challenges.

More on Societal Challenges
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