Irene Duba, Garrett Dunlap, CJ Koch (NSPN)

This report was report was commissioned and supervised by the Netherlands Innovation Network in Boston.


Technological innovation is hugely important for the wellbeing of all. However, in order for innovation to have a tangible impact, questions such as vaccine development and finding solutions to the climate crisis need to not only be studied within academic settings – the solutions to these questions must be scalable and marketable. When considering innovation pipelines, of particular interest are technologies that require in-depth and often time consuming research and development before being brought to market, also known as deeptech. The biotech and cleantech sectors include a great deal of deeptech, and these technologies provide some of the most promising solutions to the world’s pressing issues, in spite of the greater challenges in realizing the technologies. In this report, we highlight the deeptech innovation ecosystems of three innovation hubs: Boston and Pittsburgh in the United States, and Eindhoven in the Netherlands, focusing on biotech and cleantech. After describing the historical and current landscapes of innovation in these cities, we compare and contrast these cases to better understand what might successfully drive deeptech innovation in a city or region.

The Netherlands Innovation Network (NIN) in Boston is the science and technology arm of the Dutch diplomatic network. Their core focus is to stimulate international cooperation between companies, knowledge institutes and governments in the fields of innovation, technology and science. Part of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy, NLinBoston works with startups, companies, and research institutes & universities from the Netherlands and facilitates their exploration of innovation opportunities with counterparts in the Northeast of the US. To keep up to date with their upcoming events and programming, please follow them on LinkedIn and Twitter.