by Tom Bosschaert

Nov. 1, 2010

Tom Bosschaert

Dandelion is a next generation (web 3.0) software application that binds scientific, social and economic data from all over the world in an immersive visual environment. It's like google on steroids, allowing you to visually fly through three dimensional realms of information, putting it at your fingertips and making it useful. It enables a boost in productivity for knowledge management, research and social connectivity for anyone involved with research and development. Dandelion is developed in partnership with the Dutch government and Storrm CS consultants.

We can see a future where societies and economies flourish, drawing strength from their locally abundant resources. In the deserts, energy flows freely from the sun. On seashores and mountain ridges, wind towers harvest power for neighboring communities. Precious metals are recovered from wastewater streams by bacteria. Carefully designed ecosystems produce abundant and diverse supplies of food year-round.

This multitude of resources already surrounds us. The question remains: how can we transition from our current extractive economies to locally refueling economies of abundance?

This project presents a step on the path to answering that question. Welcome to the Dandelion Project.

Dandelion asset image.jpg

Project details

Dandelion is a new concept for an interactive online tool that could catalyze the movement towards a more sustainable society and an economy of abundance. The tool combines elements of a search engine, an online encyclopedia, a user-driven content generator, as well as a social networking device.

As a visual Wikipedia, Dandelion allows users to navigate through a spatially-displayed network of information that makes intelligent connections based on keywords, usage patterns, and social networks and enables higher rates of innovation globally.

Engaging communities

It also provides opportunities for interaction between different communities and social volumes through its spatially-embedded discussion groups and blogs. Perhaps most interestingly, it is also designed to connect specific problems or needs with potential solutions in response to direct queries.

Create New Development Links
The ultimate goal of this mode of informational display is to rapidly uncover new connections between concepts and people and to highlight the common paths we are traveling in our efforts to innovate towards a sustainable future.

It is now commonly acknowledged that it is not a lack of technological capacity that prevents us from moving towards a more sustainable version of our society. Rather, it is the lack of organizational capacity, coordination, and build-up of critical societal mass.

The complexity and enormous volume of information our society generates make it difficult to intelligently filter data for relevance and value without an enormous time investment.

Governments, researchers, and companies often end up duplicating one another’s efforts, or not benefiting from partnerships and interdisciplinary connections that they could not see. Relatedly, policymakers and investors often have difficulty seeing the larger trends in problem developments or technological innovation because the informational landscape is so vast and scattered.

By visualizing and intelligently organizing information, Dandelion is designed to directly address some of these problems, using a very simple interface.


The dandelion project:

  • Improves social connectivity and knowledge sharing.
  • Uncovers unique interdisciplinary links between topics in research, policy, and societal experience.
  • Reduces the duplication of effort in social and scientific innovation.
  • Identifies promising directions for  investment, research, and policy  stimulation.
  • Visually tracks the progress of global  R&D efforts.
  • Traces technological modules and human paths between material inputs (e.g., saltwater) and desired outputs (e.g., freshwater.)
  • Connects globally abundant resources with areas of scarcity.
  • Creates an information hierarchy  in academic and technical  knowledge by size-scaling topics based on their popularity or  number of citations.
  • Graphically displays the popularity of specific issues and ideas,  allowing the building of coordination and societal volume.
  • Facilitates the creation of shared  “future visions” with defined trajectories.

Nov. 1, 2010

Client & Partners

Project team

  • Tom Bosschaert


  • Tijn Tijn Schmits

    Software Architect & Developer
    Except Integrated Sustainability

  • Eva Gladek

    Industrial Ecologist
    Except Integrated Sustainability

  • Anniek van Mierlo

    Except Academy

  • Noud te Riele

    Storrm CS

  • Harry te Riele

    Storrm CS

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