Data science

Professorship of Applied Sciences Computer Vision & Data Science

The Dutch AI coalition writes that artificial intelligence is crucial for the maintenance and enhancement of our international competitive positions.

The processing of image data (photos and videos) is one of the biggest challenges, as it is estimated that 80% of all data in the world is processed in this way. As a nationally recognised expert centre in the field of pattern recognition and image processing, the Computer Vision & Data Science professorship has been contributing to the anchoring of artificial intelligence in the Netherlands for over 25 years. 

Computer Vision & Data Science is about solving automation problems in the field of visual inspections. Problems in the field of image acquisition, image processing and recognition of patterns in that image information with techniques from artificial intelligence such as deep learning and machine learning. These include quality control, automatic position and orientation determination, disease detection, defect measurement and product sorting. 

The strength of the professorship is that it has both knowledge and equipment for the entire chain of illumination, cameras, optics, set-up, vision algorithms, deep learning algorithms and their implementation in existing software systems. 

The four focus areas of the Computer Vision & Data Science professorship's applied research are: high-performance image acquisition, applied computer vision, state-of-the-art data science and education. The application is broad, from precision agriculture to medical. The goal and the approach are the same: to work from everyone's own strengths, in cooperation with students, staff and business experts, on state-of-the-art practice-oriented research projects in order to develop new knowledge in the field of computer vision and data science.  

The Computer Vision & Data Science professorship is therefore at the cutting edge of science and practice. Our challenge is to bring (the latest) scientific knowledge in the field of image data analysis into practice. Current research themes we are working on, the translation of which to practical application still has many challenges and possibilities, are: hyperspectral imaging, anomaly detection, object tracking and explainable AI. Since the professorship works on the development of algorithms, artificial intelligence, to make the application suitable and affordable for businesses and organisations, the nature of this research is innovative and can often be done in a subsidised project. 

Application examples 

Collaboration partners 

The Computer Vision & Data Science professorship is the link between higher education and the professional field. We help companies to innovate by making academic knowledge applicable. We share this knowledge with students so that they can strengthen the business world in the future as innovative professionals. 

To achieve this, the professorship is active as a researcher and educator, but also as an entrepreneur. The professorship has been working intensively with other parties for years. As a result, we have built up an extensive network of relationships with companies, suppliers, universities and knowledge institutes with whom we share knowledge and exchange experiences. The Cluster Computer Vision North Netherlands is a platform, established by the research group, of more than thirty companies in the north of the Netherlands that are engaged in computer vision ( The Plaform Image Processing for the hbo was also founded, in which the NHL Stenden plays a pioneering role. 

Over the years, the Computer Vision & Data Science professorship has built up a large national and international network. In addition to students from NHL Stenden's own programmes such as Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Technology, Technical Informatics, Mathematical Engineering and Electrical Engineering, there are also contacts with colleges abroad. Students from educational institutions in Spain, China and Mexico regularly come to Leeuwarden to work on research projects of this research group. 

The Computer Vision & Data Science professorship falls under the Research Unit of the Technology & Innovation Academy, together with the professorships Sustainable Plastics, Circular Plastics and Water Technology. In addition, the professorship is linked to the Smart Sustainable Industries focus area of NHL Stenden University. 


With its own minor and master in Computer Vision & Data Science, the professorship offers a continuous learning line for specialisation in image data analysis. The student specialises in acquiring and processing raw sensor data (images) into information (measurements in images) and ultimately into knowledge, using Artificial Intelligence methods. We focus on image acquisition, image processing and recognising patterns in that image information with, among other things, deep learning and machine learning.  

Students learn the subject by working on current practice-oriented research projects from the field, under the supervision of a technical expert from the Computer Vision & Data Science professorship. Through the professorship, students also have access to state-of-the-art equipment such as high performance computers with GPUs, 3D cameras, high speed cameras, hyper- and multispectral cameras, surround cameras, industrial cameras, but also a wide range of optics and lighting. 


Within the Computer Vision & Data Science professorship, various disciplines work together on the development of technological innovations. Professor Jaap van de Loosdrecht is the key figure in the team. Besides the researchers, students also play an active role within the team.  

Team members 


NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences 
Academy Technology & Innovation  
Professorship Computer Vision & Data Science