Semiconductor quantum dots are used to develop nanostructures for advanced electronic and photonic devices. By using the process of self-assembly, multiple layers of different substrates can be deposited on top of each other, giving rise to novel materials with different growth conditions. As in every scientific field, proper dissemination of research results is the key to directing future research initiatives and exploiting the resulting technologies to increase competitiveness in the global marketplace. To achieve this, the EU ‘Self-Assembled semiconductor nanostructures for new devices in photonics and electronics’ (Sandie) project funded a Network of Excellence (NOE) of 34 institutions and companies across Europe. The main objective of this network was to integrate research and knowledge in the field of self-assembled semiconductor nanostructures (SAN). A close partnership was established that allowed exchange of human resources, facilities and research expertise. Along that path, a series of workshops and technical training courses were organised that were also available to the public. The collaborations among network partners were extended to joint projects and investigations as well as among jointly supervised PhD students. The scientific success of the Sandie NOE was evident through the coordination and participation of several national and European projects. By exploiting research knowledge, facilities and human resources, the project managed to achieve excellence in the field. Application of the project’s findings and structures by the network’s industrial partners is expected to advance the development of electronic, photonic and optoelectronic devices.