About us

Everyone has talent. Regardless of who you are or where you come from: there is talent in you, whether developed or not. For some talent is intellectual in nature, others can do things very well with their hands. When you discover and use that talent, others can also benefit from it. That’s what we believe: each of us has something to contribute. Because you can do something that no one else can. When we bring those talents together, we can make the world a better place together. That’s what we try to do as EnschedeLAB.



About Enschede LAB

The EnschedeLAB is there to bring city and talent together. We do this through the promise ‘ Get to know the city!’ with that promise, we invite talent to get to know the city, its inhabitants and its challenges better – and to contribute to it. Making acquired knowledge really tangible , together with those concerned, in co-creation.

There are various issues in the city that can be submitted to the EnschedeLAB. Issues that are monodisciplinary, or require very specific knowledge, are presented within one of the institutions/degree programs.
Issues that are multidisciplinary (in other words: that require different types of knowledge) can be dealt with within a minor.

Or we turn it into a nano challenge, which looks like this:

If an issue first merits multidisciplinary deepening, it is offered to students as a ‘ nano-challenge ‘. These are challenges of 4 weeks, with one day each week. Each nano-challenge deals with a specific issue. Students with an interest or affinity with the issue then work on the issue for 4 full days spread over 4 weeks. There are at least 4 nano challenges per year. As a student you can participate in one or more nano challenges.

You will then work in mixed teams, both in terms of training and knowledge institution. As a group, you can decide for yourself how you will tackle the urban issue, you will receive help in applying the Design Thinking method, and you will be encouraged to talk to stakeholders. You will also receive guidance from both education and the client. It is also possible to do fieldwork with the client for all issues.

After a nano-challenge, this issue can be passed on as a relay within projects of various study programs of the knowledge institutions . In this way the issue is viewed from all sides by the talent in the city. In this way we try to make Enschede a little more beautiful with all the talent in the city.


Our Goals

We help to realize the ambitions of the city of Enschede, including in the field of sustainability and living together.

We harness talent (both student and resident) and bring it together: we learn from each other – regardless of your background.

We shape challenge-based learning within the various institutions and bring knowledge to the city.

We show talent the possibilities to contribute – in the city/region and the Twente business community.


The EnschedeLAB has been around for two years. We did two pilots, with quite a few students participating. Building on that experience, and learning from examples elsewhere in the country, we are now developing the EnschedeLAB further – and expanding it. This undoubtedly raises a number of questions. We therefore list questions that we have heard and answered before.

Who is the EnschedeLAB for?

The EnschedeLAB is intended for students. We create different settings for them to collaborate with students from other study programs and other knowledge institutions. After all, these are the people you will have to deal with in your later professional practice. We focus this collaboration on social issues: themes that are alive in the city of Enschede. After all, that is the learning environment that is most lifelike and ‘rich’.

Where can I find the EnschedeLAB?

Because the EnschedeLAB is a partnership between the four knowledge institutions, we want to be visible at all those four locations. We therefore organize the programs we organize at varying locations (Designlab, Ondernemerslab, FabLab, et cetera) and in the city, at the places where the central issues play a role. The EnschedeLAB does not (yet) have one permanent ‘home base’.

Why are you not called 'TwenteLAB'?

Given the close interdependence of the knowledge institutions with the region and the joint agenda for Twente, this would make sense today. At the same time: we started this initiative, together with the Municipality of Enschede, in the context of the City Deal Knowledge Making. That is a ‘deal’ to develop ‘rich learning environments’ for students in university and college cities. That’s how we started. However, this does not rule out the possibility that we can ultimately also tackle challenges in other municipalities, or get the Water Board, the Tax Authorities or any other public and social institutions involved, for example.

Do your students only do assignments for the Municipality of Enschede?

No, we are working on issues that play a role in Enschede. The municipality can be the client for this, but a group of residents can also do that, for example united in a residents’ company. Or a housing corporation, the local police officer, the neighborhood council, a sports association… Whenever it comes to an issue that plays a role in the city, and that someone feels ‘owner’ of to solve it. Are you like that? Please submit your issue!


Sign up for our newsletter: