Can a country this small really change the future? I never really asked myself that until it kind of became very obvious to me that the Dutchies are creative, entrepreneurial and damn ready to contribute to make our future a greater place to live in.

Here are 3 ways the Dutch are changing the future through innovation and hard work:

#1 World’s 1st 3D printed bridge opens in Brabant

I mean, yes, it’s a small one and yes, they’ve opened it in Gemert out of all places, but how freaking amazing is it that this bridge exists and is used by people everyday?!

It’s #5 at 0.55

It’s a 8 meter long bridge printed out in 1 cm layers of concrete and it’s a joint collaboration between TUE and Bram infra. With 3D printed jewelry and home decoration being widely available, I’m very curious how this will pan out in the future. Will we 3D print entire buildings? Imagine the possibilities! If you want to see what else there’s out there in the world in terms of creative 3D ideas, here’s 22 awesome 3D print concepts.

Also, can they start printing food already? Oh, wait, they already, 3(!) years ago, check out the Foodini machine that’s changing the way we eat.

#2 World’s 1st CO2-neutral chicken eggs were laid in the Netherlands

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In a world where becoming vegetarian and vegan is more and more common for various reasons, but mostly because we understand the negative impact on impact, I loved this piece of news. The province of Limburg now has a 24 000 chicken farm which is CO2-neutral and the eggs are going to be available for purchase on the market starting with October 26.

The chicken farm project is called Kipster and it’s been approved by the Dutch animal protection agency ‘Dierenbescherming’. They’ve tweaked everything so they can achieve the CO2-neutral status: 1000+ solar panels, special air filters, even the food they give the chicken is contributing to the eco-friendliness of the project. Way to go, can’t wait to get me some of those eggs this week! And they say the Dutch don’t change the future.

#3 Constantly reinventing the way traffic works

 

NS is still giving us some issues here and there and parking your bike might be a hassle, but you’ll always see a piece of news about how traffic is getting better or more innovative, at the very least. Think about the biggest bike parking garage being built in Utrecht, the world’s first floating cycle roundabout in Eindhoven or smart highways helping you out for a seamless journey.

The Hovenring

Critics are fast to show there are even bigger needs to be tackled and while all these upgrades are applauded, the pressure is soon back on to do even better. I personally love the traffic experiments going on, it shows that the mentality to improve is there, more creative than ever. Take this Tilburg experiment which is helping elderly to “hack” traffic lights or this Den Bosch’s approach when it comes to keeping the waiting times for the light to turn green as short as possible.

I’ve often thought about what keeps the Dutch thriving and pushing forward with disrupting and reinventing. Maybe it’s the “always something to complain about” attitude? What do you think?

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