Is a leading technology region in Europe. Located in the Southeast Netherlands, with Eindhoven at its heart, this top technology region of world standing creates solutions for the societal challenges of tomorrow

About Brainport

Innovation in education and the labor market

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Get in touch with…
Yvonne van Hest
Program Director People (Brainport Development)

The world around us is changing rapidly. There never seems to have been a time, which has been so disruptive. Brainport wants to remain ahead as innovative high-tech region. Human capital is a crucial success factor in order to achieve this. We must break new grounds to ensure that employers are able to attract the right talents at the right time. This is quite urgent. Dare to look at things from a different angel, to try something new and to go where no one else has been before. The Technology Pact Brainport Next Generation shows our new route into the future.


Dare to look at things from a different angle, to try something new and to go where no one else has been before. The Technology Pact Brainport Next Generation shows our new route into the future.

We are well underway. However, if the Brainport region wants to remain ahead, more has to be done. We need to align the current projects with the ideas of Brainport Next Generation. And especially address those subjects with respect to education and the labour market, in which we have not made enough progress this past period. This is especially important with respect to subjects as lifelong learning and flexibilisation of the labour market. For example, we recognize that we should find ways to better combine a flexible deployment of staff with the need for job security. Traditional models are no longer adequate.


We are even taking a step further to realize additional innovation with respect to education and the labour market. Through carefully designed experiments, new situations are created at the cutting edge of education and labour market. During the different phases of an experiment, the impact is demonstrated and analysed. Where necessary, this impact is adjusted. This way, we cooperate through trial & error. Naturally, we continue to work closely with the Central Government and the national Technology Pact, because it is better to address some issues at a national level, such as the professionalization of teachers.


  • More attention for entrepreneurial, investigative and designing skills in primary, secondary and higher education
  • More attention for technology, entrepreneurship and creativity in education
  • Better integration and repetition of the different phases of selecting-learning-working
  • Better matches between talents of people and the need of employers
  • Attract and retain more (inter) national students, experts and knowledge workers with specific profiles that are hard to find in our region

This requires more adaptability of educational institutions, pupils, students, employers, employees, jobseekers and authorities.


Technology is developing faster all the time, causing automation and digitalization to become increasingly merged in all sectors. It has become part of the very capillaries of economy and society. This means that in the future hardly any education and any professions will be left that do not involve technology and ICT. The lopsided emphasis on increasing the number of people applying for technical education is outdated. The entire education must be interlarded with technology, ICT and new skills and developments. This is the only way to prepare our children for their future in a rapidly changing world.


Previously, the different phases of selecting, learning, working and retiring in a person’s life were strictly divided. Nowadays, these phases are more inextricably linked and interchangeable. While following education, we often already have a job; when working we have to renew our knowledge and skills. When reaching the retirement age, the boundary between work and pension becomes blurred, because we continue to work during our retirement. This requires great adaptability of people, employers and educational institutions. We do not only talk of the term ‘lifelong learning’; it is essential to the status of the employee and the employer. A stance we must apply in all sectors, if Brainport wants to retain its economic competitiveness. Certainly if the minimum retirement age is to be increased in the decades to come. The challenge will be to continuously educate people to maintain their employability for at least 50 years.


There has been an ever-increasing mismatch on the labour market the past years. Both the average unemployment and the number of vacancies is increasing. This means that we have to try to match the talents of the people currently unemployed with the need of the employers. Furthermore, we have to attract and retain more knowledge from abroad, because we recognize that a number of specific job profiles will continue to be hard to find.