Innovation programmes

As part of the GigaPort3, SURFworks and GÉANT innovation programmes, SURFnet works on improved connectivity and ICT applications for use in education and research. The funding for these projects comes from the Dutch Economic Structure Enhancement Fund (FES) and the European Union, among other sources.


GÉANT and GN3plus are European collaborative projects in which SURFnet participates.

In GÉANT, the European national research and education network organisations, in collaboration with DANTE, aim to develop a next-generation European research network infrastructure. GN3plus, GÉANT's service development project, provides excellent network services and network uses. In the development areas mobile and cloud, SURFnet has a leading role.

GÉANT and GN3plus are partially subsidised by the European Union. 


Launched in 2010

The government earmarked a €32 million grant from the Dutch Economic Structure Enhancement Fund (FES) for the design and construction of SURFnet7 , which will enable the next generation of networks and support dynamic services as part of the large-scale innovation project, GigaPort3. Minister Plasterk of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science officially launched GigaPort3 in 2010. 

Completed in 2014

The roll-out of SURFnet7 was completed in 2014. This marked the successful completion of the final migration work, with key nodes also being duplicated to greatly increase the reliability of the network. The delivery of SURFnet7 was achieved through close cooperation with suppliers, users and research partners. The SURFnet7 network offers a solid basis for the further development of new services and functionalities. 


SURFconext completed

In 2014 SURFnet completed the SURFworks programme. Through this programme, SURFnet delivered the SURFconext collaborative infrastructure within 4 years. This collaborative infrastructure enables students, staff and research at institutions affiliated with SURFnet to work together easily and securely, both with each other and with their national and international associates beyond this immediate target group.

Excellent assessment GigaPort3 and SURFworks

GigaPort3 and SURFworks were implemented by SURFnet. The programmes were evaluated in September 2014 by a Strategic Advisory Committee (pdf) made up of international experts. The committee's assessment of the programme and its implementation found it to be excellent and a model for other research networks around the world.  

SURFnet/Kennisnet Innovation Programme

From 2005 until 2011, SURFnet and Kennisnet collaborated on ICT and innovation in education in conjunction with institutions and other market parties, realising around 50 projects per year. In doing so, the innovation programme has provided a significant boost to ICT innovation in education, supporting the development of ICT applications in the field of video, mobile learning, cloud computing, serious gaming, virtual worlds and augmented reality. These are applications that can make education more fun, interesting and effective, and that are accessible by the entire Dutch education sector.

Latest modifications 22 May 2018

More information