boyan-slat-560x560On October 5 2012, then 18-year-old Boyan Slat took the stage of the second ever TEDxDelft and presented his idea worth spreading: how the oceans can clean themselves.

The video of his talk went around the world and vaulted Slat into the spotlight. Since then, Slat has undertaken a massive feasibility study, with students, business leaders and researchers in the field. After prolonged silence, on June 3 2014, Slat will announce the results of his study. Back in 2012, Slat was a natural on the stage and was the clear choice for the first talk of the day. We gave him 12 minutes to tell his story and he impressed the crowd, leaving the audience with a feeling of positivity for the remainder of the event. Several weeks after the event, we uploaded the video of his talk, where it was picked up by blogs and news organizations around the world. In 2013, we re-invited Slat to speak at the third TEDxDelft about how the publicity from his TEDxDelft appearance had changed his life. Coincidentally, on that day, the video of his initial talk reached one million views on YouTube.

On October 4 2013, all Slat told the TEDxDelft audience was that the feasibility study was incomplete and it would not be ready until Spring 2014. Now the study is complete and we are awaiting the results of his study and wondering whether he has more than an idea worth spreading, an idea that will change the world.

For more information on the OceanCleanUp project and the release event, see

An article on TEDxDelft2012 performer Bas Lansdorp’s Mars One project is on
A very nice “behind the project” video was made and they included some TEDxDelft footage as well. Read more

With his talk “How the oceans can clean themselves” Boyan Slat was the first to climb the TEDxDelft 2012 stage. This 19 year-old student from Delft stole our hearts with his idea to clean the oceans of plastic in just a few years.

Last week, his story was shared on several websites and got picked up on Twitter, Facebook and especially YouTube. The views went from about 2.000 two weeks ago to 15.000 last Tuesday. On Wednesday it was 35.000 and now (Thursday 28 March 2013) it’s nearing 50.000 views.

Well done Boyan! We are very proud of you and all the best with the Marine Litter Extraction Project.

See Boyan Slat at TEDxDelft 2012:

We’re very proud that the talk by Erik Schlangen, held at TEDxDelft 2012, has been selected by the editors to be featured on Only 1{95388bbb2e9df0f2b3d26445fc24fe82185b1b567dbb094bc3a45074083d0a2b} of all worldwide TEDx talks organised is selected. Schlangen amazed his audience at TEDxDelft by repairing a broken piece of asphalt through heating it in a microwave oven – on stage. This ‘self-healing asphalt’ is a ground-breaking innovation in the roadbuilding sector, as it can save up to millions of dollars in terms of repair costs and reduction of traffic jams caused by road maintenance.

Watch the talk here:

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We were excited to have Spinvis (Erik de Jong) play at TEDxDelft 2012 last October. You can see his performance here:

On the day itself, it was still unclear if Erik could even make it to Delft due to family business, but he came anyway. That is the kind of artist he is; completely committed and using his emotions in all of his performances.

At TEDxDelft we made the announcement Spinvis will be the new cultural professor at the Technical University of Delft. Next week he will have his own show premiered at Theater de Veste in Delft . See more information (in Dutch) on their website.

Here you can hear and see for yourself how he tells a story in cut-up mini films disguised as pop music. Using letters written (or perhaps not written) to Justine Keller, he sculpts a portrait of this woman.  Highly acclaimed in the national press, we are looking forward to seeing more of Spinvis in Delft.

The TEDxDelft 2012 event was summarized in one (very) large canvas. Completing the 10-meter-long artwork took the entire day. The process was filmed and the timelapse can be viewed here. Read more

Cherrelle Eid – The Roots of Realisation

Passionate living, that is what we all want. But our smartphones might keep us busy, and our jobs and studies are driving us in directions that we hope will eventually lead to something we are passionate about. However, the need to be accepted by our peers (peer pressure) and our own definitions of success are mostly things that are aimedat striving for acknowledgement from our peers instead of really doing what we love to do. Creating the right output is what we naturally tend to focus on, instead of focusing on our personal passion. How do we get in touch with our inner passions, in a practical way? Discover the roots of realisation. Read more

Inspired by the human body, Martijn Wisse develops hands that make it easy to grasp oddly-shaped objects, legs that walk almost by themselves without motors or controls, and arms that efficiently and robustly reach their target positions. His work is part of a greater effort in Delft – and worldwide – to develop the robot technology that is so dearly needed in the developed countries. Read more

How often have you found yourself working on something that a fellow student from another faculty could solve in less than half an hour?

How often did you work on a project related to energy and sustainability and found yourself coming up with the same solutions as last year’s group? How often did you try to think out of the box with very dissapointing results? Find out at TEDxDelft Salon on 21 November Read more

Surprising and playful. Touchingly honest. Extraordinarily natural and naturally extraordinary. The Delft based floral designer and artist, Pim van den Akker, makes everyday things extraordinary. Take a fresh new look at clothing and design. Take a fresh new look at flowers and plants. Take a fresh new look at daily reality. Read more

Ionica Smeets (@ionicasmeets) at TEDxDelft: A mathematician and science journalist with plenty of media experience. Using her vast knowledge and enthusiasm, she can explain everything about her favorite topics in science and statistics. She does it well on paper and face-to-face: She writes blogs, columns and books and is also asked to appear as a speaker, live, on television and on radio shows. Read more

Our TEDx sign (without the “Delft” part) went on tour to…. TEDxTilburgUniversity. They made a nice teaser movie with it. Read more

Boyan Slat (@BoyanSlat, Delft, 1994) combines environmentalism, creativity and technology to tackle global issues of sustainability. Currently working on oceanic plastic pollution, he believes current prevention measures will have to be supplemented by active removal of plastics in order to succeed. With his concept called Marine Litter Extraction, Boyan Slat proposes a radical clean-up solution, for which he won the Best Technical Design award 2012 at the TU Delft. Read more

Wednesday 17 October, Eva Lantsoght talked about fifty shades of concrete at TEDxDelftSalon.

Well-designed structures interact with their surroundings: they can enter into a dialogue with the natural light, stand out as a landmark and shape the landscape or become part of it. As for concrete structures, we typically associate these with grey buildings from the second half of the 20th century, or the monotonous bridges in the highway network — concrete offered a cheap solution for the housing and transportation needs of the increasing population. Read more

The idea of going to Mars, as presented by Bas Lansdorp at TEDxDelft, is hot news in the Netherlands. SBS news – Hart van Nederland – featured an item called ‘The Dutch are going to Mars’.
“In 10 years it’s going to happen: Men will go to Mars. It won’t be the Americans or the Russians to be the first… will be the Dutch non-profit Mars One to take on the mission”.
See the item (in Dutch) at


At TEDxDelft, Jongens van de Tekeningen made live visualizations of all speakers and performers at TEDxDelft, 5 October 2012.. This giant drawing was made on a 1,5 by 5 meter piece of paper and it sold afterwards; the money was donated to charity. During the day, the process was streamed live over the internet and everything was recorded. In this timelapse video, the whole day is captured in just 1,5 minutes. Read more

To introduce TEDx to the TEDxDelft audience in 2012, we created a mini-fairytale in animation style. We thought it fitting to choose for a fairytale, because of the theme Never Grow Up. The drawings were made by Rosa Cerruto, Aldith Hunkar did the voice and Improve/Firos Kariman did the editing. We are very proud of the result and are very pleased to have started TEDxDelft off with this animation. It really worked out well, we think. Read more

Normally when you ride your bicycle you simply just hop on it and you are on your way to your destination. But have you ever considered asking yourself, how does the bicycle work? How does a bicycle balance on its own? What keeps the bicycle upright?  Bicycle don’t do tricks Read more

When it comes to changing behaviour, advertising agencies generally do a bad job. Designers are masters of manipulation. And once we know this, we can start manipulating this planet into a better place. Says Tom de Bruyne, Belgian, psychologist and ‘advertsing guy’ as he puts it himself. Why designers eat advertising people for breakfast Read more

The closing performer of the day is Nynke Tromp. She talks us through some ideas that will shake up our society!

She states that our democracy has become a mediacracy. Politicians respond to incidents versus having a long term vision. It’s all about being lovable instead of being capable. About fighting with your opponent instead of building bridges. This destructive competition has led to a gladiator fight. Short term focus for quick wins has replaced long term focus. With small adjustments, we can change this system. Let’s rack this media circus! Instead of voting day, let’s vote on our birthday! Read more

Wendy Lampen explains us in a very vivid language how she experiences the world. All sensations impact her brain and collide such that she has linked memories. She gives us an insight on what the world feels like when you have Asperger’s syndrome.

Her brain might function in a different way, but does that simply mean she is abnormal? Or could her different braintype actually add value to our world as well, by shining a light on the world from an angle so unexpected to us? And why is there a mindmap on the screen while she is talking?

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Judith Adema is a 16 year old singer songwriter who is best known by the public through her song ‘Everything Changed’, which she sang in the ‘birdy contest’ on the radio show of Chiel Beelen. She had her first piano lesson at the age of six, and from that moment music has been in her life. A friend told her she should participate in the radio contest and so she did. Although she didn’t win, she impressed many people with her song ‘Everything Changed’ about losing someone who is dear to you but being able to move on. She wrote the song after losing an uncle she was close with. The emotions took her back to the time of the loss of her father nine years ago. Judith: “Although you lose someone physically, the person is still around”.  She still feels the presence of her father, even more so because the musical talent of her father continues in her. Read more

Pim van den Akker (1976) is one of the best floral masters in the world, teacher and designer. For the tedx introduction click here. In his Tedtalk he tells a personal story about how you can really use the child inside you to look at the world. He wants to be a child in the playground called the world. When he wakes up every day, he looks outside and thinks of what he wants to do in this big playground. Read more

Self Healing Asphalt in practice

Erik Schlangen looks at cracks in buildings and roads, and considers the material to be ill, not broken. And the ill patient can be healed, as long as initially he contains some simple tricks. Read more