Universiteit Leiden

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Leiden to be European City of Science in 2022

In 2022 Leiden will host the Euroscience Open Forum, Europe's biggest multidisciplinary scientific meeting. Leiden University, the Municipality of Leiden and The Hague Convention Bureau joined forces to organise the conference and bring it to Leiden.

On 29 June both Leiden and the Italian city of Trieste presented their proposals for organising the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) in 2020. The ESOF Supervisory Board found the proposals both impressive and solidly founded.  On this basis the Board decided to appoint both cities ‘European City of Science’: ESOF 2020 will be organised by Trieste, and Leiden will organise this prestigious conference in 2022.

Equal candidates

The choice in favour of Trieste in 2020 is due to Trieste's links with Eastern Europe and Central Eastern European scientists, business networks, politics and society, where ESOF2022 will serve as the connecting factor. Conversely, as a centuries-old European city of science and culture, Leiden is acclaimed for its university and is famous for its mathematical, natural, health and social sciences. The city, with its BioScience Park, is the perfect example of the connection between scientific research and its many applications, while The Hague is known worldwide as the International City of Peace, Security and Justice.  

Prof. Gail Cardew, Chair of the ESOF Supervisory Board: ‘The different traditions of Trieste and Leiden and the diversity of their research, their business contacts and their social engagement will enrich ESOF enormously. We are looking forward to developing a strong and challenging programme together with the organisers of both cities.' 

Leiden delegation proud of result

Leiden's candidacy is supported by two ‘local champions’ from Leiden University: Professors Corinne Hofman and Ferry Breedveld, both of whom are proud of the result. 'Bringing this conference to Leiden emphasises our position as a knowledge city. Europe's biggest multidisciplinary scientific conference will bring a delegation of over 4,500 scientists and technological leaders to Leiden in 2022. The theme Science, the infinite source of discoveries,  is the perfect match for the city's motto: Leiden, City of Discoveries.’

Mayor Henri Lenferink: ‘I'm enormously proud of the collaboration between the different parties; it again illustrates the enormous ambition of the city and the University to present Leiden as an international knowledge city. ESOF's choice in favour of Leiden for 2022 is evidence that this is now integral to the city's reputation.’

Martijn Bulthuis, Director of Leiden Marketing, is convinced that this conference will contribute to the prominent position of Leiden. 'As well as our reputation as an international knowledge city, in 2022 we can also expect a major economic spin off; that's something we have seen with other cities,' a proud Bulthuis commented. Yvonne Kret, Manager of the Leiden Convention Bureau, added that hosting  ESOF in Leiden will give the city an enormous impetus as a conference city. 'It's a fantastic opportunity for our Leiden Convention Bureau,’ she said.

Leiden University, the Municipality of Leiden, Leiden Marketing and The Hague Convention Bureau joined forces to bring ESOF to Leiden.