Quality of Life

Theme 1

Quality of Life

Maastricht is known for its Joie de Vivre, its zest for life. Just as the city and region are increasingly a centre for art and culture, culinary diversity, literary achievement and a year-round festival cycle, so has Maastricht University and its partners devoted themselves to science, research and development that improves the quality of life for people here and abroad. From innovative medical research and product development to creating a critical mass of arts and heritage expertise; from information systems research that streamlines civic process to research devoted to sustainable societies and innovations for the developing world, we're doing our part to improve people's lives

How do you define 'quality of life'? How do people function physically, psychologically and socially? Within this research theme, Maastricht University will conduct research into, for instance, demographic developments including the ever increasing ageing population, people working for longer, and the rapid technological developments and their applications. The overall purpose of researchers is to answer the question: How can we improve quality of life?

Multidisciplinary research around this theme will focus on 'Physical Health', 'Psychological Health' and 'Welfare and Well-being'.

Quality of Life articles in the UM Web Magazine    


Learning and Innovation

Theme 2

Learning and Innovation

The development of scientific knowledge about learning and innovation has an important place within Maastricht University. Contemporary societies ask for innovations targeted at life-long learning of knowledge and skills and at promoting that everyone can develop and use their full potential. The theme Learning & Innovation encompasses all research that is concerned with practical, conceptual, and theoretical aspects of learning, concerning both ongoing practices, as well as innovative practices of learning and teaching. From fundamental research about learning and development processes in the field of (child) neuropsychology, cognitive neuroscience, and educational psychology to learning in higher education including our own university, education and labour economics, and applied research about artificial intelligence in the classroom.

The taskforce Learning & Innovation works on the further development of this theme, creating new collaborations and inspiring researchers and practitioners to work together on this important topic.

 Keep reading about Learning & Innovation.

Europe and a Globalising World

Theme 3

Europe in a Globalising World

Birthplace of the European Union, border-city between Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, and a cross-roads of various languages and cultures, Maastricht is the ideal location for the study of Europe and its place in the internationalised world. Almost all academic programmes at UM have either a EU-regional or international perspective, and we offer exchanges and internships throughout the world. We have founded several research institutes devoted specifically to cross-border issues, and our legal and social sciences departments are at the forefront of research into European law and politics.

UM has developed several lines of interdisciplinary research within this theme. We have studied different aspects of the European Union including the organisation of the EU, the role of Europe in the world stage and the tensions between cultural memory and diversity on European and international levels.

Political scientists, lawyers, economists, business experts, health sciences scientists, historians and cultural  scientists conduct research into the relationship between national (and regional) governments and 'Brussels', and the european policy and managerial challenges in a globalising world. The  two lines of research at UM are entitled: Europe "beyond Maastricht" and Maastricht "beyond Europe".

Europe in a Globalising World articles in the UM Web Magazine   

sustainability and circularity

Theme 4

Sustainability & Circularity

It is becoming increasingly clear that the future of all of us and of our planet is connected to the way we live. There is a growing awareness that we must together take on the task of promoting sustainable development and broad-based prosperity, which is also expressed in the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations. Going forward, UM wants to place its research, education and other activities more clearly in the context of these SDGs.

Circularity focuses on cycles of raw materials, while sustainability relates more broadly to people, the environment and prosperity. This theme is therefore relevant for all faculties and ties in seamlessly with our social responsibility towards our community and our planet. We approach this theme from a broad and holistic perspective that goes beyond a focus on the use and reuse of materials. With our research (and education) on sustainability and circularity, as well as our valorisation efforts through the Brightlands campuses, UM is accelerating the transition to a sustainable society with circular solutions. 

The taskforce Sustainable UM 2030 is working on developing an active research community that connects cross-faculty sustainability and facilitates interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary sustainable research. Visit the website of sustainable research to know more about recent developments.

UM research themes

  • Theme 1

    Quality of Life

  • Theme 2

    Learning and Innovation

  • Theme 3

    Europe in a Globalising World

  • Theme 4

    Sustainability & Circularity