1. Start-up scene
Groningen has the fastest growing start-up campus in the Netherlands and the second fastest growing tech sector in the Netherlands (just behind Amsterdam, for four years in a row!). Eight Groningen companies are in the Deloitte Fast 50. The University of Applied Sciences delivers the most enterprises in the Netherlands and ranks sixth worldwide for graduate entrepreneurship.
2. Global competitiveness
The Netherlands is the most competitive country in Europe and ranks third in the world on the Global Finance FDI Index, fourth on the Forbes ‘Best country for business” and sixth in the world in the WEF competitiveness index 2018. The Netherlands ranked No. 2 on the 2018 Global Innovation Index.
3. Resident talent
Groningen has a young, highly educated population. Over 40% of Groningen residents have a higher education degree; as home to over 50 000 students, Groningen is the youngest city in the Netherlands. The University of Groningen is consistently listed among the world’s top 100 universities, and as best broad university in the Netherlands. The Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen is consistently in the top 3 technical universities.
In 2018 Groningen was awarded a European Good Practices label for its internationalisation policies. 90% of the Dutch population speak English, and the population of Groningen is rapidly becoming more international, with over 120 nationalities in the student population alone.
Groningers are famous for their no-nonsense and honest attitude to life and business. The northern Netherlands is also characterised by its strong networks, short chains of command, and unique partnerships, such as the Akkoord of Groningen, which help to fuel public-private collaboration and innovation. Read more about Dutch working culture on our page about it.
A local motto is: "Nait soezen, moar broezen". No complaining, just excelling.
6. Energy transition
Groningen is taking a lead role in the transition to sustainable energy and climate change adaptation, and home to initiatives such as the New Energy Coalition and the Global Centre on Adaptation.
7. Quality of life
Groningen is one of the happiest cities in Europe, and regularly scores among the top in quality of life rankings, making it a great place to live and to raise children.
For instance, a recent major EU survey of quality of life across 83 European cities ranked Groningen in the top for many aspects, (and second overall in the Netherlands behind Rotterdam). For instance:
- Groningen scored the highest level of satisfaction for school and educational facilities across the whole of Europe
- Clean air - second highest level of satisfaction across whole of Europe
- Health care services - second highest level of satisfaction across whole of Europe
- Scores in European top 10 or 20 for satisfaction with green spaces, cleanliness, noise level, etc.
At a national level, the latest OECD Better Life Index found that residents in the Netherlands enjoy the best work-life balance in the world and the Netherlands was ranked sixth in the World Happiness Report.
8. Safety and stability
Trust in the public sector in Groningen registered as the highest in Europe across 83 cities in the recent EU survey. Groningen also regularly ranks as the safest large municipality in the Netherlands. At a national level, the Netherlands scores in the world top in terms of political and economic stability.
The Netherlands ranks number 1 for infrastructure across the EU; the Eemshaven seaport in northern Groningen serves as a main European data port and energy port, delivering a third of the Netherlands total energy needs.
With one-tenth of the population of the Netherlands covering over one-fifth of the country’s territory, the Northern Netherlands is the least congested area in the country. You will get more than double the square meters for the same amount relative to Amsterdam.