The traditionally Dutch image of tulips and canals doesn't include the innovative ecosystem of universities, industries and creative pioneers that in 2022 earned the Netherlands a fifth place on the Global Innovation Index. To show future trade partners and international talent this other side of the Netherlands, all innovative regions united to found a nationwide movement called New Dutch. For NBTC, NL Brand and NEA, we created a campaign to put this initiative on the map.
As a movement and international platform, New Dutch represents the Netherlands' eternal drive for innovation. Leading up to the national New Dutch theme year of 2025, an ongoing storytelling-campaign highlights the most groundbreaking Dutch innovations from various sectors that illustrate how the Netherlands of today is still shaping the future. With this futuristic showcase, the campaign aims to inspire early adopters to discover all that Dutch innovation has to offer and join the next generation of Dutch masters in solving the biggest global challenges of our time.
We developed a wide range of on- and offline tools, including a thematic campaign video, an online database of Dutch innovations, a brochure, social media content and a complete toolkit. These tools enable all participating regions and international ambassadors to easily promote the mission of New Dutch. We also came up with various activations for the different phases of the campaign, such as a regional #newdutch tour bus that takes visitors to future heritage sites of the Netherlands during the national theme year.
Based on a national vision, the Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions (NBTC) inspires, connects, and facilitates cities, regions, entrepreneurs, and other stakeholders in strengthening the reputation of the Netherlands as a tourist destination. NL Brand is the national identity with which the Netherlands communicates abroad. The Netherlands Enterprise Agency (NEA) continuously works to build a stronger and more sustainable Dutch economy.
The core concept of the campaign is centred around the 'When X meets Y' formula. It represents New Dutch's belief in the creative power of unexpected encounters, and is used to show surprising combinations of different or seemingly incompatible elements. The formula also refers to new encounters between cultures, people, and ideas, thus stimulating international collaborations. The #newdutch campaign sticker with the tagline ‘That’s #newdutch’ forms the outcome to the formula, emphasising in every piece of communication what is typically 'New Dutch'.
In curating the #newdutch showcase, we continuously select the most striking examples of Dutch innovation in the fields of sustainable energy, artificial intelligence, healthcare, art, music, design, high-tech, mobility, agriculture, urban planning and water management. Examples include a car that filters CO2 from the air while driving, a biodegradable coffin, a water taxi powered by hydrogen, bullet-proof human skin cells and an old swimming pool that has been transformed into a hub for circular entrepreneurs. For the physical version of the #newdutch toolkit, we designed a special casing made of recycled plastic, in which all of these #newdutch projects are stored in the form of handy collection cards, which can easily be shared and used to spark new conversations on Dutch innovation.