The innovation economy requires well-considered, designed and managed physical environments for innovative companies to establish, grow and interact. Science parks, innovation districts, industrial innovation parks (all together innovation areas) fulfil these needs.

The exchange of information in local, regional and world wide networks is key to the innovation economy. Firms operating in this economy are inclined to seek creativity-stimulating environments and recognizable locations, together with specialized facilities such as laboratories, clean rooms, flexible work places, meeting centres and incubators.

In every decade, new ideas are presented, focussing on new ways to innovate. In recent decades co-innovation, science and technology parks and incubators are just a few concepts that came into focus. For today’s businesses, it is crucial to work together on innovation with other companies, institutions and organisations. Technology has become so specialised that no one can afford to do everything on their own. Networking (co-creation and co-development) with partner firms, institutions and universities is essential for success. Most new, successful products are the result of collaborative work between engineers, marketing experts, designers and often colleagues and academics as well. The benefits are lower costs, a faster time to market and highers return on investment.


Different concepts for areas that stimulate creativity and innovation have been developed since the early fifties. Today, we realise that an innovation area is ‘nothing more’ than the ‘inner city’ of an innovative region: an innovation area cannot exist in its own. So, if one wants to develop a science park, an industrial innovation park or an innovation district, it is necessary to analyse the potential and the qualities of the region. Moreover, in today’s thinking it is about networks, network management and serendipity management, worldwide linkages et cetera, and last (but not least) about real estate.

From the developer’s point of view, financial planning, accountability and risk mitigation are important in the development of market strategies and project management. A “feeling for the market” is not sufficient to come to a solid business proposition.

Learn more about the definitions that we use here.

Read more about our proposition here.