ASCONA plays several roles in connecting basic science with industry and society


ASCONA aims to support the embedding of basic science in society - both with industry and organisations with a societal objective - by creating optimal interconnections.

Initiating and conducting collaborations

ASCONA initiates and conducts science-driven collaborations. With a background in science alliances based in industrial fundamental research, ASCONA offers the knowledge and skills needed for setting up and guiding successful scientific international collaborations between academia, industry and society.

Connecting science and industry

ASCONA connects and communicates between science and industry. It fosters networks with a complementary capacity from science, industry and politics. This originates from the need for basic science to be embedded in society in such a way that it creates sustainable value.

Enabling technology

ASCONA enables systems, science & technology and social sciences such as law, ethics & governance, with technological domains - e.g. infrastructure and data science - in various fields of science. The underlying goal is to create a positive impact for society, both nationally and internationally.

Research and innovation

ASCONA makes connections that lead to research and innovations within technological domains, as well as activating that technology in science and society.

Pasteur’s quadrant

ASCONA stimulates the process of fundamental understanding of scientific questions, combined with their social usefulness. Especially if they can come together in a logical context – see Pasteur’s Quadrant.

ASCONA is founded by Alexander Brink

ASCONA is founded by Alexander Brink

Alexander J. Brink started 'ASCONA for Science & Society' in 2019 after having worked for IBM Research for a long time. He was ultimately responsible for its scientific collaborations with academic institutions in The Netherlands, the United Kingdom and South Africa. After completing his MSc BA at Erasmus University Rotterdam, Alexander started as an advisor at Coopers & Lybrand (now PwC). After transferring to IBM in 2003, he became co-responsible for the IBM Global Account in Europe. Following his time as a manager in IBM Finance, IBM’s Grants & Innovation organization came into the picture. Under his leadership, this was transformed into 'Science Alliances'. In addition, IBM Research in Zürich (Switzerland) was structured in long-term alliances with academia and industrial parties.
Helmholtz Gemeinschaft
max planck gesellschaft
Humboldt Universität
Radboud universiteit
University of Twente