Maastricht’s new web strategy for international institutes
April 7, 2005 Leave a Comment
Maastricht has embarked upon an ambitious initiative to create an internet site, Maastrichtinstitutes.info, with the goal of attracting new international non-profit organisations to the area and to assist those which are already based in the region.
“The new site is necessary, since most non-profit organisations in Maastricht act independently of each other, thereby losing out on much of the potential of communication,” says Simone van der Steen, senior adviser at Maastricht municipality’s department of social and economic affairs.
Launched in February, the site is a platform to facilitate communication between the institutes based in Maastricht and will contain, among other things, the profile of the institutes, their activities and a timetable of the seminars offered .
This new source of information will foster cooperation between several organisations .“It is an initial step in creating a virtual meeting place for institutes, both among themselves and with external bodies. The site will be an important link between the different organisations: they need each other if they want to survive in the globalisation process, and that’s the bridge we provide,” says Ms van der Steen, who is supervisor of the project.” The institutes themselves are the really important actors in this process because the real power of the website is based on institutional communication,” she adds.
In fact, such cooperation is important not only for the numerous organisations but for Maastricht itself. The era in which large investments were provided to the municipality of Maastricht by the provincial government, the state and the EU, is long gone.
“Recently we had a fall in the number of international institutes wishing to locate in Maastricht; this internet site will change the situation. In the past Maastricht has shown that it can attract international meetings and international institutes, putting itself on the map as an international investment location and a centre of expertise,” says Ms van der Steen.
Maastricht wants to attract other non-profit organisations to remain financially competitive and keep its international profile, especially within the Euregio. “We hope the project will expand in the future,” says Ms van der Steen. “Time will tell if the project is going to succeed.”
By Dimitri Afenditis
Source: Crossroads print issue, April 2005