In 2024, Flanders Technology & Innovation celebrates Flanders as a hotbed of technological creativity and innovative ideas. From Antwerp, Leuven and Hasselt to Brussels, Kortrijk and, of course, Ghent. FTI Gent is serving up a seven-day technology festival for you and me. With a dizzying host of (inter)national scientists, thinkers, opinion leaders, musicians, artists, and athletes. But most of all with a vivid focus on bio & health tech, preventive medicine, sports, food, digital art, music, and the use of data and AI in all those fields. For a harder, better, faster, stronger future.
In doing so, FTI returns to where it all began. Because remember that illustrious handshake between man and robot? Which has since been copied a million times? A year before James Cameron came up with The Terminator – in 1983, to be precise – Ghent hosted the first edition of Flanders Technology, “an international fair for new technologies.” More than 100,000 people visited the Floraliënhal back then to get a glimpse of the future and see how Flanders was, successfully, establishing itself as a high-tech region.
At its peak, Flanders Technology attracted more than 600,000 visitors, but overtaken by the speed at which technology was evolving, the showcase festival called it quits in 1999. However, like most other cool stuff from the 1990s, it is time to bring back Flanders Technology (& Innovation) as well. A blast from the past, so to speak. But with an eye on the future!