Application/who can apply

I am a student, can I apply?

Yes, students can apply.

Is it necessary to be registered in The Hague in order to participate ?

No, you should only be able to work for minimum of two days a week in The Hague and attend all the workshops.

If I do not have a prototype because I offer a service, is it still possible to participate in the programme?

Yes, it is possible. It is essential that you are able to answer the question: “What could we make at a minimum to get our product/service functioning to prove it is a solution to a problem?”.

Do I need to formulate my questions in English?

You are allowed to formulate your questions in Dutch or in English.

Are there any costs involved?

No, there are no costs involved.

Do I need to have a KvK (Chamber of Commerce) registration in order to apply for the programme?

For phase 1 and phase 2 it is not necessary to be registered. For phase 3 (starting September 5th) your startup must be registered at the Chamber of Commerce.

Does the proposal need to be written in English?

The proposal can be written in English or Dutch.

I have questions about the program, where can I send them to?

You can send your questions to [email protected]

Is it possible to apply for multiple urban challenges?

Yes you can apply to multiple challenges, but you can only win with one entry.

We are not currently a startup (as in: registered in the chamber of commerce), will we still be considered for the programme? Or do you only consider startups that already have a prototype/beta version?

No, you can also be a very early startup without any prototype. However, during the jury selection, we do take into account your team’s capabilities to build your solution for the Municipality and your current experiences.

What does the application entail?

  • a document (4 A4s) with a clear description of your concept
  • a document (2 A4s) with answers to a list of questions

The application format and list of questions can be found in Appendix 3 of the Tender Guidelines.

Is it possible to apply with an initiative that has received support already?

The initiative or solution should not be tested or built for another customer yet.

Is registration as a foundation at the Chamber of Commerce sufficient?

Yes, you can start as a foundation. However, if you want to make profit as a startup, it would be advisable to register as a startup.

I want to know more about a specific challenge.

Registration for 2018 is closed. For the next edition we will organise another information meeting (in April 2019) during which you can ask questions to the responsible civil servants.

What is the deadline for registration?

Registration for 2018 is closed. The next edition of Startup in Residence The Hague will open in April 2019.

When will the registration be open?

Registration for 2018 is closed. The next edition of Startup in Residence The Hague will open in April 2019.


Where can I find more information about the criteria for the Startup in Residence programme?

The municipality of The Hague will look at the following aspects when evaluating the proposal entry:

  • Vision, innovation and impact (the quality of the problem description, extent to which the solution solves the problem, innovativeness of the solution)
  • Realisation and implementation (how easily the solution can be implemented and whether the timeline is financially feasible)
  • Continuity (how far along the startup is and their experience in entrepreneurship

Further information can be found in the Tender Guidelines.

Do I get my own office for the coming four months?

The municipality will provide the selected startups an office space at Apollo 14 in the Binckhorst The Hague during the SIR programme (September-December).

I have questions about the programme

For questions about the programme you can take a look at the website or send an email to [email protected]

Is there another way to show my concept if I do not have a prototype?

It is essential that you are able to answer the question: “What could we make at a minimum to get our product functioning to prove it is a solution to a problem?” but it is up to you how you would like to present your concept.

What is phase 1 (concept phase)?

Phase 1 runs from April 10th till June 28th. Startups can sign up for the programme between April 10th and May 22nd (midnight). On June 12th a maximum of 3 highest ranked startups will be selected per challenge to participate in phase 2. An introduction meeting with civil servants and the selected startups will take place on June 28th.

What is phase 2 (intensive validation)?

Phase 2 runs from August 13th till September 4th. Selected startups will receive 3 weeks training in the problem-solution fit. This is a boot-camp type of environment, and a great opportunity for startups to achieve a high level of validation. Startups will pitch their solutions on September 4th. Based on the proposal entry, the pitch, and the responses to the questions asked by the jury, the jury selects a maximum of 1 (highest ranked) startup per challege. Startups will be informed about their participation in the programme on September 5th.

What is phase 3 (action and pilot)?

Phase 3 is the actual Startup in Residence programme which will take place from September 5th until mid December 2018. In this programme startups receive various trainings, do experiments in the city and come up with an action plan for their solution. Startups remain in contact with their coach/challenge owner for guidance and feedback during the course of this programme.

What is phase 4 (further development)?

Phase 4 takes place when the Startup in Residence programme ends mid December. In this phase startups will work on further developing a proposal for building a prototype or starting a pilot.

What is phase 5 (implementation)?

After preparing a pilot or building a prototype the Municipality could become a possible launching customer. The implementation phase is separate from this competition. If this option is chosen, a separate contract will be signed between the startup and challenge owner within the Municipality. This contract will be drawn up in consultation with the startup and after the Municipality of The Hague has announced its intention to embark on the purchasing process.

Business Plan

To what extent must the product be built before the presentation? Must there be a beta version or a design?

You must provide a document with a clear description of your concept and a document answering a list of questions (see Appendix 3 of the Tender Guidelines). How you present your concept is up to you.

What are the criteria for a successful solution?

After being selected for the SIR programme (phase 3), the startup will work together with civil servants on the solution. Before civil servants decide on whether or not to pilot the solution, criteria for a successful solution will be decided together.

Can the idea also be a service instead of a product?


Is having a business plan/model optional or required?

When applying for Startup in Residence, the startup should submit a document clearly describing the concept for their solution for the urban challenge (see appendix 3 of tender guidelines). A full business plan is not required. if selected, startups will further develop their business plans during the programme. 

What does a business model look like?

Description of the application requirements can be found in Appendix 3 of the Tender Guidelines.