Innovate faster together

The How To Get There Summit on 19 November aims to stimulate the collaboration between corporations, startups and innovation hubs in the Netherlands. Following the initiative of Minister Kamp, 500 experts on innovation and more than 50 researchers and professors are invited to share their knowledge and experience. Keynote speakers Ben Verwaayen (former CEO Alcatel-Lucent) and Kees de Jong (entrepreneur and investor) share their vision on innovation. Special Envoy for startups Neelie Kroes has also invited 20 CEOs of Dutch corporations to come together and formulate a roadmap that outlines how they can work together with startups to innovate faster together.

Dutch innovation hubs

All innovation hubs from the Netherlands, like Amsterdam, Twente, Eindhoven, Delft, Rotterdam and Utrecht, join the Summit to define their contribution to this innovation process in terms of knowledge and expertise. On the same day and at the same location, the Dutch final of the international startup competition ‘Get in the Ring’ will take place. 250 startups from all over the Netherlands will make their way to the Rotterdam Science Tower to attend workshops, pitch in front of investors and network through speed dating. In the evening, 6 of the most promising startups get in the ring and battle for a spot in the regional finals of Get in the Ring in London where they get to represent the Netherlands. 

Collaboration between startups and corporates

In recent years, more than 150 million euros has been invested in new innovation hubs in the Netherlands. These hubs work together with Universities to stimulate entrepreneurship and innovation, building on existing scientific knowledge. "On the How To Get There Summit we will bring all parties on a national level together to give our innovation capacity an extra boost" says Hendrik Halbe, founder of Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship (ECE). The ability of startups to quickly test and develop new products and services and the corporation’s powers to deploy this on a global scale, is a unique and highly valuable combination. The Netherlands has a unique position in the world with its renowned scientific output and powerful corporations that are represented worldwide. The goal is to create new collaborations between startups and corporates who can then leverage on each other’s unique strengths.


Despite the mutual benefits, such collaborations have shown not to come naturally. Startups and corporates struggle to find and to understand each other. For corporates on the one hand, finding startups is a time-demanding quest. Startups on the other hand experience difficulties in accessing the corporate world. In addition to that, the two parties have deviating worldviews as well as different ways of working. The How To Get There Summit aims to incite innovation by focusing on making better use of existing facilities in the Netherlands, sharing key experiences and connecting startups and corporates.

Tickets for the How To Get There summit are available on