About SURF
SURF is a cooperative association of Dutch educational and research institutions in which the members combine their strengths. Within SURF, we work together to acquire or develop the best possible digital services, and to encourage knowledge sharing through continuous innovation. The members are the owners of SURF.
SURF Cooperative

There is a growing awareness in society and education that the deployment of intelligent technology requires reflection and guidance to exploit opportunities and manage risks, which the technology also entails.

icoon team



Become a member

SURF is a cooperative with over 100 members. These are all funded Dutch universities and umc's, most universities of applied sciences and intermediate vocational education institutions, and various research institutes including NWO and KNAW institutes. The education and research institutions work together within SURF to make full use of the opportunities of digitisation.

Conditions for participation

An organisation wishing to become a member of SURF must meet the following conditions:

  1. The institution's core activity is education and/or research, or makes a substantial contribution to it.
  2. The organisation or institution is a contracting authority within the meaning of the Public Procurement Act 2012 (or any laws and regulations that replace it).

This does not mean that every organisation that meets the conditions is automatically accepted. The board decides, with the approval of the members' council, whether an institution can join and how the representation for that institution will be arranged (this in connection with the voting proportions in the members' council).

Decision-making via the Member Council

SURF is of and for the members. When an organisation becomes a member of SURF, it participates in decision-making. The organisation is assigned to one of the sections of the Members' Council, which takes decisions on behalf of the members. Thus, the voice of all members is heard.

Get in touch

Is your institution considering joining SURF? If so, please contact us via email: rmi@surf.nl.

Membership & contribution

What does the SURF membership declaration entail?

Every institution admitted as a member signs a SURF Membership Declaration (pdf, 141 kB). This sets out the agreements on collaboration within the cooperative and on determining SURF's portfolio of services.

Should a member no longer meet the conditions for membership, SURF expects to be informed within a month.

Who signs for membership of SURF on behalf of the institution?

One (if independently authorised) or more (if jointly authorised) director(s) of the institution.

Who can cancel membership?

A member may terminate membership with immediate effect, but remains liable to pay the membership fee for the year in which termination takes place. On termination of membership, the purchase obligations that existed at that time or would irrevocably arise on the basis of the service agreement(s) with the operating companies will remain in force.

SURF can only terminate membership if a member no longer satisfies the conditions or if the continuation of membership can no longer reasonably be required of SURF. Termination requires a board resolution with the approval of the members' council.

How much is the annual membership fee?

The membership fee varies per department and within it per member. For educational institutions, the number of students plays a role. For other institutions, the size in FTEs and the government contribution play a role. There is no single formula for all members.

What is the contribution paid to SURF used for?

The membership contribution is used for the operations of the cooperative and partly for the innovation programmes from the SURF Long-Term Plan.

What are the membership conditions?