Groningen is the capital city of the eponymous province in the Netherlands. With a population of 202,567 (2017) it is the largest city in the north of the Netherlands. An old city, Groningen was the regional power of the northern Netherlands, a semi-independent city-state and member of the German Hanseatic League. Groningen is a university city: it houses the University of Groningen (with about 30,000 students) and the Hanze University of Applied Sciences (with about 25,000 students). Groningen has the highest percentage of students by total population, approximately 25 percent. The university educated the first female student, Aletta Jacobs, the first Dutch national astronaut, Wubbo Ockels, the first president of the European Central Bank, Wim Duisenberg and three Nobel prize winners, Fritz Zernike, Heike Kamerlingh Onnes and Ben Feringa. The universities have about 15,000 international students; 20% of the staff, and 60% of all PhD students are internationals.
The economy of Groningen is centered around the universities, two mayor hospitals, and around government services. Groningen is also know for it's innovative IT-sector, with an excellent start-up climate, and for it's energy sector, related to the minin and distribution of natural gas from Europe's largest gasfield, the "Groningen-Slochteren cluster". Groningen is now rapidly becoming the hub for renewable energy, because the societal costs of minig were not longer acceptable to the population.
Groningen is lead partner of the Transfer Network 'Welcoming International Talent'.