Education for raising awareness, innovation and internationalisation

The BE-Basic education program has a twofold objective:

  1. To raise awareness; to develop and to embed education and training for identified needs in several levels of the Dutch education domain; and
  2. To develop and to embed an international (joint) program of tertiary and post-tertiary education.


Raising awareness among citizens for innovation for a Biobased Society

Current public debate and the media tend to focus on energy from biomass and the tensions between land use for food or fuel. Recent public research shows that people tend to respond negatively to bio-energy but regard bio-resources in a more positive way. People have a hard time to define and understand ‘Biobased Economy’. This is a potential issue for embedding innovation in the development of a Biobased Economy, i.e. bio-based products: materials, plastics, fuels and feeds.

Approach and activities
BE-Basic has concentrated its awareness raising activities in formal (Dutch) secondary education. By selecting activities with proven track-record and continuity, substantial outreach and accessibility is ensured. A mobile DNA-lab and a Truck ‘Your Energy of Tomorrow’ provide 16-18 year olds with the basics of fermenting waste. School competition Imagine involves high school students (age 17-18) in implementing biotech solutions in developing countries. A website dedicated to DNA, All about DNA, adds necessary concepts and materials to students and teachers.

Education for internationalisation and innovation

We need to educate young people for future jobs in BBE and, at the same time, offer training to employees in BBE (-related) companies and institutes. BE-Basic has based its higher education program on inventories of BBE education in The Netherlands, from vocational to post graduate level, and on the needs of industry concerning biobased education. In addition, academic staff in Brazilian partner universities have indicated their interest for joint tertiary and post-tertiary education.

Approach and activities for internationalisation
For a worldwide audience of bachelor students and others, BE-Basic and TU Delft will initiate a Massive Open Online Course on BBE in Fall 2014. A double degree PhD program on Bioenergy will be set-up allowing for joint supervision by Dutch and Brazilian supervisors, as well as special activities for PDEng students participating in bi-lateral research projects.

BE-Basic will tailor existing advanced courses to the Brazil situation and embed these in local universities. By using up-to-date online technology, this collaboration serves as a stepping stone for other international collaborations in e.g. China, Vietnam and with neighbouring European partners.

Approach for innovation
For Dutch BE-basic PhDs, a special course on entrepreneurship will be developed. This course will be run in an international edition. In a lifelong learning trajectory industrial needs for staff training will be specified in more detail, tailor-made training programs and master classes will be developed. After evaluation of the training programs, the results will be fed back to master courses of BE-Basic academic partners.

Video about the BE-Basic Education Programme

Education Inventory

The BE-Basic educational program is based on an inventory of education commissioned in 2013. Please find an abstract of the inventory and the annexes in the following links:
Biobased Education in the Netherlands – Inventory of present and required courses of modules (pdf)
Inventory Biobased Economy; primary and secondary education (Dutch)
Inventory MBO education (Dutch)
Inventory of Biobased courses at the Dutch BE-Basic partner universities (English)
Inventory companies and biobased education (Dutch)