ZoARG | ReDUCE founders
A BRIEF HISTORY on ZoARG - Reggefiber, the largest Dutch fiber optic operator in the Netherlands, installed more than 7000 km cables per week at its peak (up until 2015). By doing this, Reggefiber was a company that potentially also enlarged the chances that utilities were damaged during fiber optic construction work of subcontractors. It is because of the potential large societal impact of such damage (serious incidents, injuries, power outages, water flooding), that Reggefiber took her role as utility operator in avoiding damages. With this, she made the first important step in enhancing the reliability and safety of utility construction work.
Ever since 2010s Reggefiber collaborates with the University of Twente on the Excavation Damage theme. To help industry forward, UTwente and Reggefiber decided not only to focus on fiber optic projects, but more generally at avoidance of any strikes to existing buried infrastructure.
To this end, Bert Nijboer (former Reggerfiber CEO) and Ed Brinksma (former chair of the Board of the University of Twente) singed the 'incentive fund' (stimuleringsfonds) for Zorgvuldige Aanleg en Reductie Graafschade programme. This fund allowed 10 P.D.Eng. trajectories to be started. Together with the graduates working in the domain of utilities, these PDEng trajectories generated the first impulse to education, research and development in the field of utility strike avoidance.
In 2016, Elmer Wiemer (directeur Reggefiber) and Prof. Dr. Ir. André Dorée (hoogleraar Universiteit Twente) lead the ZoARG programme. Dr. Ir. Leon olde Scholtenhuis (assistant professor) leading researchers within the programme.
ZoARG started as ' incentive fund' for Dutch industry and gained both national and international attention since then. Since more students, authorities, and industry organizations partcipated in ZoARG-related activities the programme grew. Meanwhile, the programme also uses the English acronym ReDUCE.
Contributing to this initiative?
You can become ZoARG | ReDUCE partner. Please contact André Dorée or Léon olde Scholtenhuis (Universiteit Twente) for more information.