Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions (AMS), the new institute for applied urban technology and design, will be moving to an apt spot in the centre of Amsterdam in September, taking up residence in the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT). AMS is an initiative of TU Delft, Wageningen UR and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and partners.
A key aim of AMS is to embed its organisation in Amsterdam’s social landscape by, for example, collaborating with partners from non-profit organisations and the business community. At the meeting today, it will be announced that VU University Amsterdam and the University of Amsterdam are also to join this partnership through the Centre for Urban Studies, the science faculties and the Center for Entrepreneurship. An intensive partnership in the field of research, education and entrepreneurship will thus be created with both Amsterdam universities and the overarching Amsterdam Academic Alliance (AAA) on board.
Engineer Renée Hoogendoorn will take on the role of director of AMS in 2014, the year of the institute’s inception. Based in Amsterdam and with the breadth of her extensive knowledge and experience in transforming the urban environment, Hoogendoorn is exceptionally qualified to lead AMS in this set-up phase.
The new deputy mayor of Amsterdam, Kajsa Ollongren, will give her first public performance at the official opening of AMS. In recent years, Ollongren worked as Secretary General at the Ministry of General Affairs.
Dirk Jan van den Berg, President of the Executive Board of TU Delft, is pleased with the location: “We want to be part of the university culture in the city. This central location, near to Amsterdam Science Park, is therefore ideal.”
“The proximity of Amsterdam Science Park is even more important now that VU University Amsterdam and the University of Amsterdam will be leading players in AMS,” says Louise Fresco, upcoming executive board president of Wageningen UR. “We are delighted that the Amsterdam universities will be joining forces with AMS and contributing their expertise to complement the extensive ‘green’ know-how of both urban and rural areas that we can offer Amsterdam at Wageningen UR.”
AMS will be setting up house for at least three years in KIT where research and innovation will form the focus in the coming period. An innovative Master’s degree programme in the field of Metropolitan Solutions will also be created. The programme is set to start on a modest scale and will eventually grow to accommodate around 200 AMS Master’s students in 2020. But AMS’ education programmes will also be made available to many thousands of students around the world through open online education.
Across the world, people are increasingly moving into cities; by 2030, around 70% of the world’s population is expected to live in major cities. This presents great challenges for society, especially in the areas of traffic flow, food, waste, energy, water and health. AMS will adopt a multidisciplinary approach to conducting research into these issues, developing solutions and implementing them.
The consortium for the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions is a network of partners from a variety of disciplines. TU Delft, Wageningen UR and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) form the academic heart of the initiative. They are working together with partners Accenture, Alliander, Cisco, IBM, KPN, Shell and Waternet, Amsterdam Smart City, ESA, TNO, Waag Society and the city of Boston. The collaboration between all these partners provides an opportunity to study the metabolism of the city from a multidisciplinary perspective. Moreover, AMS is an open platform in which parties with a viable contribution are welcome to participate.
Amsterdam is set to become AMS’ ‘living lab’. Residents of the city will be involved as testers, users and co-creators of products and ideas intended to improve the quality of life in the city.