Excellent science

Data research & Smart business development

A leading data research center

Brightlands Smart Services Campus is a unique community that combines basic research, applied research in real-time business cases, value creation, and education to accelerate business growth—all in an effort to develop talent and innovation in business and technology.

The campus was born out of a mix of powerful ideas: to bring together the knowledge and skills found in major organizations, startups and education, and apply them within a flexible community of businesses and institutes of every size and focus. Here at Smart Services Campus, world-renowned companies, smart startups and a leading institute fostering brilliant research and education create the most successful and innovative community of its kind in Europe.

BISS Institute

The Business Intelligence and Smart Services Institute, or BISS Institute, is a partnership between Maastricht University, Open University and Zuyd University of Applied Sciences and is the scientific institute on the Campus.

The Brightlands Institute for Smart Services is a regional thinktank specialized in digitalization. BISS organizes events, workshops and offers post-academic education. In co-creation with businesses and students, BISS works on research projects in the fields of data science and artificial intelligence. For these projects, BISS offers space for data visualization and a venture & innovation lab for experiments and innovative thinking activities. BISS researchers also give classes for bachelor and master programs at Maastricht University, Zuyd University of Applied Sciences and the Open University.

BISS has three areas of expertise: 1. data ecosystems 2. data analytics 3. decisions and impact. Through theoretical and applied research, BISS aspires to generate impact in the financial, health care, education and public sectors.


Accenture in Heerlen converts data into new and smarter services, thus helping organizations improve their services and customer experiences in the new digital world. Through the combination of research, specialized knowledge, and experience, Accenture generates innovation at an unsurpassed speed and strength in delivering smart digital services “that improve how the world works and lives”


At Techruption, small and large enterprises and organizations, startups and academic institutes work together to build further on technological innovations in blockchain and artificial intelligence, and on new smart solutions to fight climate change and its effects. This initiative makes Techruption the ultimate breeding ground for concrete, practical applications in these fields. Taking the lead in these efforts are TNO, BISS (comprised of Maastricht University, Zuyd University of Applied Sciences, and Open University), APG, the Province of Limburg, and the Brightlands Smart Services Campus.

Dutch Blockchain Coalition

Blockchain is a relatively new information technology with the potential to exchange data securely and efficiently in a decentralised manner. That offers opportunities not only for saving costs but also for developing new revenue models and providing consumers and citizens with more control over their data.

Many parties, both large and small, are interested and this further increases the impact of the technology. In the national approach the coalition will work with initiatives from start-ups (such as Dutchchain/Dutch Blockchain Hackathon) and larger regional field labs (such as Brightlands in Heerlen and Blocklab in Rotterdam).