Students of ILS learn their profession in real life. That is why International Lifestyle Studies works together with companies from the Netherlands and abroad. In the first two years of the programme, these companies act as project owners. In their third year, students can also approach them for their internships. On Join ILS, these companies introduce themselves on a regulary basis.
Company name Veilig Verkeer Nederland (VVN)
Representative Rembert Sierksma (innovation coordinator)
Working together with ILS since 2015
Sectors Human Movement, Living
What kind of company is VVN?
‘The mission of VVN is that everyone can cross the street safely. We are concerned with the behaviour of road users, not with infrastructural measures. If necessary, we can organize neighbourhood actions, for example by placing speedometers or gluing 30km stickers. This makes motorists aware of the maximum speed in a district. We work together with some 40,000 volunteers, from brigadiers to traffic parents. We facilitate them. In doing so, we focus on behavioural change and the participation of citizens. Our goal is to solve problems together. As an innovation coordinator, I am working on innovations on both a strategic and operational level. Necessary, because our products are not always in line with our times.’
What is your relationship with ILS?
‘The first time we worked together was in 2016, when second year student Maud van der Veen made a trend and concept manual. This year sophomore students have investigated for us what society looks like in 2030 and how that affect VVN.’
What is the added value of the collaboration for your company?
‘It is important for us to know how society develops. ILS trains people who will be able to make future scenarios. What direction are we moving? And how does that affect our organisation? It is important for us to know that, to be aware of it, so that we can respond quickly. In her trend and concept manual Maud identified trends such as Paranoid Parenting and Joy of Missing Out. We have made great use of that. We are reorienting ourselves. The students' findings provide inspiration. Sometimes they have surprising insights, for example about the development of cities.'
What do you like about ILS?
‘For my work, it is impossible to keep track of everything. The collaboration with ILS is a way to inform myself about social trends and future scenarios. This future-oriented approach is unique. Besides that, I look at society from VVN's point of view, students have a much more broad perspective.’
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