VUB CROSSTALKS is a unique kind of academic and corporate networking launched by Vrije Universiteit Brussel in 2003. Working bottom-up and interdisciplinary, CROSSTALKS wants to create a new dynamic of knowledge exchange through thematic encounters, beyond specific disciplines and with the active participation of key players from all levels of society. An open and collaborative approach is crucial in every CROSSTALKS initiative, ranging from small scale professional workshops to big public events.

The CROSSTALKS format encourages constructive dialogues on policy probing issues, engaging academic researchers, scientists, artists, corporate leaders, and creative entrepreneurs in the discussion. Current projects are tackling Smart Logistics, Energy Efficiency, Sustainability and Changeability, Prosperity without Growth?, Bridges over Troubled Water, Cleantech and Transparency in Healthcare. The results of these events are wrapped up in a series of inspiring publications, giving an impetus to future collaborations in research and development.


In a fast moving society driven by economy, there is little time and space for the development of long term strategies for R&D, as well in the corporate, academic and political context. Yet, on daily basis, short term measurements are taken that have long lasting implications whereas a more open and complex systems approach imposes itself to tackle challenges of innovation, health and well being.

Therefore CROSSTALKS, the Brussels University and Industry Network aims at:

Creating an open and constructive exchange dynamics

Since we live in a fast moving and continuously evolving society, long term visions are fundamental. However, the short term agenda's of decision takers do not allow the development of common ground and the emergence of long term perspectives. This is exactly where CROSSTALKS can make a difference. Crucial about CROSSTALKS is the collaborative partnership and sharing of knowledge in an open and constructive way - the university has to provide a professional, unbiased platform that is trusted by all participants.

Sharing knowledge, stimulating creativity and innovation in search of sustainability

The cross-disciplinary approach is a key issue to face the global imperatives for innovation, keeping one eye on the quality of our social and individual life and another on the economical sustainability.