NWO grant for nine talented UM researchers24 July 2012
The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) has awarded Veni grants to nine young researchers from Maastricht University (UM) who have all recently obtained their PhD degrees. Each researcher will receive up to €250,000 to conduct research for a period of three years. The NWO has awarded a total of 147 Veni grants to young researchers.
The Maastricht Veni laureates are Dennis Arnold (Technology & Society Studies), Giselle Bosse (Political Science), Olivier Marie (Economics), Liesbeth Mercken (Health Promotion), Elise Muir (International and European Law), Henry Otgaar (Clinical Psychological Science), Esther Phielix (Human Biology), Annelies Renders (Accounting and Information Management) and Stephan Smeekes (Quantitative Economics).
A total of 939 researchers submitted proposals, which were reviewed by discipline-specific assessment committees made up of renowned scientists. The Veni researchers are at the start of their careers, but have already shown remarkable talent for academic research. The grants of up to €250,000 give them three years to further develop their ideas.
The Veni grant is one of three types of grants awarded as part of the Innovational Research Incentives Scheme (Vernieuwingsimpuls). The other two are the Vidi grant (for experienced postdocs) and the Vici grant (for highly experienced researchers). The Innovational Research Incentives Scheme was initiated by the NWO in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW), the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and the universities.
At the request of the NWO, the laureates have provided short descriptions of their research projects:
Dennis Arnold: Social protections and precarious work in Continental Southeast Asian Borderlands
The emergence and the expansion of global production networks pose challenges for those interested in sustaining and expanding regulatory structures that guarantee decent work. Drawing on fieldwork in Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam, the project studies factors that delimit workers obtaining social and labour protections through: employment and states, and families and communities.
Giselle Bosse: ‘Making’ and ‘Breaking’ Democracy Promotion in Authoritarian Regimes
How does the European Union decide whether to promote democracy in authoritarian regimes or not? This research explains how, and under what conditions, private sector actors, such as multinational corporations, influence European Union decision-making on democracy promotion in authoritarian regimes.
Olivier Marie: Labour Market Opportunities and Criminal Participation
Research has shown that people with lower incomes are more frequently involved in crime. This study aims to learn whether this relationship can be explained by differences in individual character traits. It will also analyse whether changes in income lead to crime.
Liesbeth Mercken: The spread of risk behaviors in adolescent networks: a multilevel approach
During adolescence, risk behaviour is spread through friendship networks. The researchers aim to identify this spread at different levels by focusing not only on friendship networks, but also on other important networks that young people are involved in.
Elise Muir: Taking European values seriously: collective enforcement of EU non-economic law
How can Europe’s most fundamental values be enforced more effectively? This project studies the possibilities open to organisations, groups or individuals to take legal action at a national level to protect collective interests. This is useful for preventing and eliminating violations of EU law.
Henry Otgaar: Shifting Memories: Reversing Developmental Trends in Memory Illusions in (non)Maltreated Populations
Memory illusions occur daily. In a courtroom, such illusions can have disastrous consequences, such as wrongful convictions. The researchers predict that adults are more susceptible to these memory illusions than children.
Esther Phielix: The fate of incomplete amino acid metabolism in type 2 diabetes
People with Type 2 diabetes have a defect in their muscle energy metabolism. The researchers are studying the role that amino acids play and analysing whether changes in the supply of amino acids (e.g. through food) leads to improved energy production.
Annelies Renders: Does Size Matter: Gambling on Fair Value Gains by Too Big to Fail Banks
Systematically important banks (banks that are ‘too big to fail’) take big risks because the government guarantees their survival. The researcher will examine the extent to which these banks take risks through the accounting choices they make and will study possible preventative measures.
Stephan Smeekes: Bootstrap Methods for Time-Varying Processes
Because the traits of many economic processes vary over time, it is important to use econometric techniques that can be relied upon when such changes occur. This study will develop these reliable techniques by using the statistical ‘bootstrap’ method.