Over 9 million for four research projects from Utrecht with new type of funding

Money for collaborations between universities and social partners

Four projects from Utrecht have received funding from the so-called National Science Agenda: Research on Routes by Consortia (Nationale Wetenschapsagenda: Onderzoek op Routes door Consortia, NWA-ORC). The projects involve a total of 9,25 million euro. Utrecht University is also one of the academic partners for a fifth project

The NWA-ORC scheme is awarding a total of 61 million euros to 17 research consortia. A special feature of this new funding is that it is used for collaborations between knowledge institutions and social partners, allowing them to examine urgent issues together.

'We strongly believe that research is enhanced when it is conducted together with external partners'

Henk Kummeling, Rector Magnificus at Utrecht University, is delighted with the awards to Utrecht. 'The main reason is that these grants are intended to enter into partnerships outside the university. We strongly believe that research is enhanced when it is conducted together with external partners. It will only be possible to resolve major social issues by looking beyond the boundaries of academia. As we have been doing so for a long time, such as with our hubs, we are very pleased that the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research is also moving in that direction with these grants.”

Subsidence in the Netherlands - Project leader: Esther Stouthamer of the Faculty of Geosciences

Subsidence in the Netherlands is a current, complex problem in urban and polder areas which is attracting increasing attention. Old solutions are no longer working well. This project will invest in modelling the subsidence. New approaches will also be developed with a view to ensuring that decisions on action scenarios are grounded in actual knowledge. For more information, click here. Total grant NWO: 4,4 miljoen euro

Marcel Bouvy

Preventing an opioid epidemic in the Netherlands - Project leader: Marcel Bouvy of the Faculty of Science

While opioids are useful painkillers, they also have drawbacks. Their use in the Netherlands is increasing sharply. In order to prevent an epidemic of abuse such as in the US, the consortium will investigate the causes and consequences of this increase. It will also examine how the problematic use of opioids can be reduced. For more information, click hereTotal grant NWO: 1,8 miljoen euro

Good risk assessment for pregnant women in Ghana - Project leader: Rick Grobbee, Distinguished Professor of Utrecht University, also working at UMC Utrecht

A better assessment of the risk during pregnancy of poor outcomes for mother and child will ensure that the right care can be given to the right woman at the right time. In Ghana, we will examine how health-care providers can use risk assessment in a respectful way and involve women in the decision-making process. Total grant NWO: 1,3 million euro

Better individual treatment for children with autism - Project leader: Hilgo Bruining of UMC Utrecht

Autism is a common developmental disorder in children, for which proper treatment does not yet exist. The project researchers hope to determine the best treatment for each individual child on the basis of brain measurements. This process should ultimately increase the success of the treatment and reduce the burden on the child. Total grant NWO: 1,8 miljoen euro

The risk of an outbreak of infectious diseases - Project leader: Marion Koopmans of Erasmus MC 

Researchers from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine are also involved in a project led by Erasmus MC. This consortium - part of the Netherlands Centre for One Health (NCOH) - will investigate how changes in climate, landscape, water management and travel contribute to the risk of an outbreak of infectious diseases. Utrecht University and University Medical Center Utrecht are important academic partners in this project. For more information, click here. Total grant NWO: 9 million euro