BioHack Academy

Design, build and use your own biolab

Are you interested in do-it-yourself (DIY) biotechnology, but you don’t have a background in either biology or technology? Do you like to make things yourself and tinker with technology? Do you have a creative and innovative mindset and want to work with biomaterials?

BioHack Academy #7


The BioHack Academy has a duration of 10 weeks. Participants are expected to be present on Monday and Tuesday.


BioHack Academy is taught in English.


The exact prices for this edition are not yet determined. The prices mentioned here are indicative and are excluding VAT (21%).

  • Early birds tuition fee: ca 2,000 euro (excl. VAT). Expected material costs: 500 euro.
  • Regular tuition fee: ca 2,500 euro (excl. VAT). Expected material costs: 500 euro.
  • Students: ca 1,000 euro (excl. VAT). Expected material costs: 500 euro.

There is a limited number of places available.

Disclaimer: The BioHack Academy can only proceed when we have reached enough participants. In case we do not reach the required minimum number of paid participants, the BioHack Academy will have to be cancelled and the tuition fee will be reimbursed.


The tentative deadline for registration is 1 November 2019.

What is the BioHack Academy?

The BioHack Academy is a 10-week course (2 days per week) that focuses on learning the basics of biotechnology, working with biomaterials and building your own open-source lab equipment in our Fablab. Participants will learn how to work with lab equipment and conduct experiments to develop a specific application or a creative project. After completing the BioHack Academy you will be able to grow your own fuel, food, filaments, fragrances, fungi and much more funky bio stuff at home.

Under the guidance of our BioHack teachers you will follow lectures and workshops two days a week. The other days a week you are able to work on your own project in the Open Wetlab. During the course we will introduce you to open-source hardware and encourage you to replicate and improve these designs. During the course you will obtain a lot of knowledge that will provide a base to continue your own research for many years. 

Bio-tech revolution

Bio-technological developments follow each other at a rapid pace, and play an increasingly important role in our lives and society, whether it is in food, medicines, building materials or life sciences. The simplicity and low costs of digital fabrication make it possible to build your own lab equipment and apply biotechnology outside laboratories or research institutions.

The sharing and availability of open-source knowledge enables everyone to get involved in biotechnological developments. Where do we want these technologies to go and who manages it? During the BioHack Academy we form the future and we look at what we can do ourselves with biology and technology.

Where do we want these technologies to go and who should be in charge? During the BioHack Academy we shape the future and give direction to the bio-tech revolution together.


What do you learn?

History of Biohacking, lab safety and 3D design.

Device: sterile hood

Week 1
Microbiology, electronics and documenting.

Device: magnetic stirrer

Week 2
Biomaterials, Bio art-design and digital electronics.

Device: incubator

Week 3
Optics, liquid culturing and bioethics.

Device: microscope

Week 4

Device: thermocycler

Week 5
Midterm presentations
Week 6
Biomaterials and separation techniques.

Device: centrifuge

Week 7
Bioinformatics and spectrometry.

Device: spectrophotometer

Week 8
Bio-digital media and biotic games.

Device: peristaltic pump

Week 9
Graduation show
Week 10

BioHack Academy at Waag

All classes take place at Waag’s Open Wetlab, a unique BioHack space on the crossover of art, science and technology and the Fablab Amsterdam. Have a look at results and projects by students of the previous BioHack Academy: 2015201620172018.

General terms and conditions

Read the general terms and conditions for participation in the BioHack Academy here

International partnerlabs

The BioHack Academy is a truly international course. In the past editions, partner labs from the US, Latin America, Asia, Australia and Europe have followed the course simultaneously via remote video. We expect new partners to join this course as well, and grant you to opportunity to collaborate with biohackers from all over the world!

Are you interested in becoming a partnerlab during BioHack Academy #7? Drop us an email.

More information

For more information on the annual BioHack Academy, contact us via email.


Roland van Dierendonck
head of the BioHack Academy
Lucas Evers
head of the Open Wetlab

Roland is leading the BioHack Academy #5. He has co-organized events about open source hardware, digital biology and biomaterials at Waag’s Open Wetlab, and exhibited several bio-related art-science works. Next to this, he teaches in the biospace at the Product Design department of the Utrecht University of the Arts. He really enjoys tinkering with creative technologies and music, making illustrations, and collaborating with diverse people. 

Roland has a MSc. in Media Technology at Leiden University and a BSc. in Bèta-gamma, specialization in Biology, at the University of Amsterdam. 

Lucas is head of the Waag’s Open Wetlab programme and has profound knowledge of the intersection of biology, design and art. 

He has an education as an artist and teacher in the creative arts and studied politics at the University of Amsterdam. He is co-initiator of the Do It Together Bio series and the Bio Art & Design Award. 

BioHack for your organisation

Besides the annual BioHack Academy at Waag we can also develop tailor-made programmes for your organisation in which part of the curriculum is taught. Contact us to explore the possibilities or discuss a specific question.

Contact us