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The historic Belgian city of Leuven is known for its centuries-old university and as the headquarters of brewing giant Anheuser-Busch InBev NV. Less so as the location of a semiconductor research organization that is now the center of both political and industry attention.

The Interuniversity Microelectronics Center (IMEC) may be Belgium’s best-kept secret, but it’s in global demand for its work on the future of computer chips, with applications in areas from genome sequencing to autonomous driving.

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