Science and Business Come Together at Dutch Data Science Awards

January 12, 2017 | Zoetermeer / Haarlem

Renowned Mathematician Alexander Rinnooy Kan Presents Award to Industry Leaders

The Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (KHMW) and the Big Data Alliance (BDA) are presenting the Dutch Data Science Awards (Nederlandse Data Science Prijzen) for the first time this year. With this initiative, the organizers want to put the Netherlands on the map as the world’s leading country in the field while stimulating entrepreneurship and academic research. Registrations for the award, which is to be given annually, are now open.

Nederlandse Data Science PrijzenData science – a discipline that discovers hidden patterns in large amounts of data – is playing an increasingly important role in society. Today’s pioneering medical research is done using algorithms, terrorism is fought using data, and there isn’t a successful Dutch football club that doesn’t make use of analytics. The potential value of data science for the Dutch economy is estimated at 45 billion euros. Even so, companies are desperate for talent. A shortage of 8,000 data scientists is expected next year (source: Nationale Denktank).

Alexander Rinnooy Kan, chairman of the Big Data Alliance: “Dutch companies and researchers are leaders in the field. That is why KHMW and BDA felt compelled to create the Dutch Data Science Awards in collaboration with leading businesses like AIMMS, EY, Lubbers De Jong, Microsoft and ORTEC. Our goal is to put exceptional companies and innovative research projects in the spotlight. We expect the number of entries to be very high.”

Startups and scientists have a chance to win 5,000 euros
The Dutch Data Science Awards are divided in three categories. Companies that exist for less than five years and are applying data science in an innovative way, can compete for the Anthony Fokker Award. This startup prize is named after Dutch aviation pioneer Anthony Fokker, who started his first company in Haarlem one hundred years ago. Researchers who have been promoted between January 2014 and January 2017, can compete for the Gerrit van Dijk Award, named after the famous Dutch mathematician. The winners of both awards will receive 5,000 euros.

The Hendrik Lorentz Award is for a businesses or government institution that applies data science in a distinctive and innovative way. The award’s namesake, Hendrik Hendrik Lorentz, won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1902 and served as secretary of The Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities.

Entries for all categories must be submitted before March 21, 2017 on the following website: The awards ceremony will take place on June 8, 2017 at the Hodshon Huis, the seat of KHMW in Haarlem. The event’s program will be announced soon. 

About the initiators
The Dutch Data Science Awards are the result of a cooperation between businesses and scientific institutions. The awards were initiated by The Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (KHMW) and the Big Data Alliance (BDA). KHMW, the oldest society for the sciences in the Netherlands, was established in 1752 to promote scientific research and bridge the gap between science and society. His Majesty King Willem-Alexander is a protector of the Society. BDA was founded in 2015 as a partnership between companies, universities and research institutions. BDA aims to unlock data science knowledge, share expertise and research, and encourage innovation in the field.

The awards are supported by leading businesses in the technology sector: AIMMS, EY, Lubbers De Jong, Microsoft and ORTEC.

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