Impact of imec
Since 2004, every other year IDEA Consult has been mapping out the impact of imec’s activities on the Flemish and Belgian economy. The impact studies provide a unique insight into how imec has evolved as a strategic research centre over the past 15 years, including the merger with iMinds in 2016. The strategic research centre’s growth is also apparent in the impact that imec has in Flanders and Belgium.
While in the early 2000s, imec’s impact was mainly limited to its scientific-technological excellence and economic activities, by 2019, its impact had become much broader, extending across various domains: (i) scientific-technological, (ii) economic, (iii) catalytic and (iv) broad social.
In the impact study, IDEA Consult uses company-specific information to calculate the (direct and indirect) economic impact and technological effects as well as the resulting revenue from imec’s core activities, which is channelled back to the government in the form of tax. Analysis of the ecosystem around imec also shows how imec’s role in this ecosystem has become much more diverse since then, whether as a research partner for high-tech companies, an incubator and financier of start-ups and growth companies, a policy adviser and consultant to civil society organisations on new technologies or a science communicator to the general public. Finally, we also explore how imec contributes, via its activities, to achieving the major social transitions that the Flemish Government has proposed in its Vision 2050 for Flanders.
The results of the impact assessment are an important source of information in imec’s reporting on its activities to the Flemish Government and other stakeholders.