Published: “Big Science in the 21st Century, Economic and societal impacts”

Very recently the book entitled: “Big Science in the 21st Century, Economic and societal impacts” was published. The book provides a comprehensive overview of the impact that Big Science has on our society and the important benefits that Big Science provides for society.

Contributions to the book were made by a very diverse group of writers, from many different perspectives. They each talk about the major challenges and benefits of Big Science in various different disciplines and in many countries. The lessons that can be learned from existing Big Science Organisations and the best practices to increase the benefits for society are discussed in detail.

In particular attention is given to the insights and recommendations from the ENRIITC project to further improve and professionalise the connecting capabilities of the Industrial Liaison Officers (ILOs). NWO-I was a major partner in this project. Chapter 8 specifically addresses this topic: “Industrial liaison officers, key intermediaries between Big Science organisations and their industrial suppliers”. As a first author, Toon Verhoeven, former ILO of DIFFER, describes the important role of ILOs, which also in the Netherlands started to ensure a good match between supply and demand and thereby obtaining, sometimes large, orders for the Dutch business community.

Triggered also by the efforts of the Dutch ILO-network, this approach has gradually evolved into the creation of a “consolidated European Big Science marketplace”. An important step in the evolution was the creation of the Big Science Business Forum, where all important Big Science Organisations can share and discuss their investment plans directly with the interested business community. The social aspects of Big Science will become increasingly important, which will also place increasing emphasis on the total innovation ecosystem for Big Science, creating a more intimate bond between Big Science Organisations and the industry involved.

Five chapters of this book can be read for free, including a chapter on developments at CERN. The book can be found at:

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