In 2008 representatives from leading Dutch industry laboratories and academic groups in analytical science and technology groups at universities joined forces to meet the demands for (i) fundamental research in the area of analytical science and (ii) well-trained analytical personnel at PhD, MSc and BSc (plus BAS) levels. The sense of urgency was evident. They decided to start COAST as a community vehicle to invest in the future of Analytical Science and Technology. COAST develops and executes an integrated strategic agenda for research, human capital and infrastructure in analytical science. Today, COAST is recognized as the Community of Innovation in Analytical Science and Technology in The Netherlands.