Past events

The MYA has hosted a variety of events, find the past events below. 

A Discussion on Recognition and Reward

On January 14th, 2022, the Maastricht Young Academy hosted a debate on Recognition and Reward (R&R) between two signatories of letters in favor and in opposition to recognition and reward. Prof. Hanneke Hulst (Leiden University) and Prof. Floris de Lange (Radboud University) helped us dive into the relevant topic of the R&R revolution.  

The debate mainly focused on the issues about current forms of evaluation in research, but also the evaluation of teaching, leadership and impact was discussed. Prof. Hanneke Hulst stated that R&R is evolving. Because we are currently in a period of change, we need to practice, learn from past mistakes, and include richer qualities of definition beyond quantifiable metrics when trying to develop a more adequate system. She stressed that R&R aims at people making fitting decisions and enhancing the potential of their research and work, doing so by rewarding excellent academics in all fields and disciplines. 

Prof. Floris de Lange argued that the main issue in R&R lies within the scientific indicators that make it hard to evaluate and compare people with different aims or skills. By stressing the importance of evaluating research potential, he highlights that new, more efficient methods of evaluation need to be developed. In addition, he noted that people with different kinds of expertise are needed and to be heard, as variety plays a pivotal role. However, when using metrics there is little room for diversity. That is why Prof. Floris de Lange argued for more objective criteria so that everybody is allowed to be part of the conversation and to choose their own ways.

All in all, there is an urgent need for measurements that value all skills and potential of academics. Only if we integrate efficient indicators, we can build a fair Recognition and Rewards program and provide equivalent opportunities for all academics.

'Bake Your Research' competition

In May 2021, the Maastricht Young Academy ran a 'Bake Your Research' competition via Twitter. The idea was for the participants to get creative and make an edible version of their research. Some of the competition entries included neuron cookies, microscopic slide biscuits, and a panna cotta brain. Although there were many yummy-looking entries, the overall winner of the competition was PhD candidate Mareike Smolka with her buddha-head-shaped cookies decorated with brain scans - representative of her ethnographic research into the effects of meditation on the brain.

Growing Up in Science events

The Maastricht Young Academy initiated a local chapter of Growing Up in Science in October 2020 at Maastricht University. The opening event took place on the 9th of October 2020, and featured Prof. Dr. Rianne Letschert, Rector of Maastricht University. Since then, several successful GUS sessions have been held, where the speakers have shared their unofficial stories, and have imparted some wise words of advice and encouragment to the audience members. 

'Picture a Scientist' documentary and discussion

On Monday, the 30th of November, the Maastricht Young Academy hosted a screening of the ‘Picture a Scientist’ documentary, in collaboration with Lumiere cinema in Maastricht. The documentary provides an insightful and emotive narrative of the experiences of women scientists in their fields of work. The film drew on the experiences of the older generation of women in STEM, who advocated for the equality of representation, pay and working space for women in science, where these factors were better for their male colleagues at the time. Although these measurable aspects have somewhat changed in some contexts, contemporary women in science, and particularly women of colour, are still subjected to hardships - from unwanted sexual attention and harassment to subliminal exclusion and unsolicited critique. The screening of the documentary was followed by a panel discussion given by Lisa Brüggen, Leo Köhler and Pamela Habibovic, and Lauren Wagner as the moderator, where the personal experiences of the speakers in relation to the film were shared and ways forward for women in science were discussed. The overarching narrative of the documentary and the panel discussion pointed toward making the sciences increasingly intersectional and equitable for a greater inclusion of the next generations of (women) scientists. Food for thought was left with all of the attendees of the event.

Watch insights here

Intercultural training workshops

On 21 October, 24 November and 1 December 2020, the MYA hosted a series of intercultural training workshops, and will continue these events in 2021. 

The training designed for individuals who want to become familiar with how cultural norms can determine behaviour and interactions with colleagues and students. 

Anyone working with people from different cultural backgrounds will notice that they have particular preferences when it comes styles of communication, time keeping, giving negative feedback, and hierarchy. 

This training is suitable for anyone working in a (international) team and for tutors/teachers that interact with international students.  The training will explore these differences as well as help participants navigate around different cultural styles in order to facilitate harmonious interaction and smoother productivity.”

About the trainer 

Nava Hinrichs-Passuto is the Head of Executive Education and Capacity Building in Migration at the UNU-MERIT and the Maastricht Graduate School of Governance where she heads various training and capacity building programs, including the Migration Management Diploma Program (MMDP) for migration professionals.

Maastricht Migration Lecture Series

The Refugee Project Maastricht, the Maastricht Young Academy (MYA), the Maastricht Center for Citizenship, Migration, and Development (MACIMIDE), UNSA Maastricht and UNU-MERIT are organizing the Maastricht Migration Lecture Series. 

The lecture series was initiated in 2020 and will continue into 2021. 

With this lecture series, the Refugee Project Maastricht, the Maastricht Young Academy (MYA), the Maastricht Center for Citizenship, Migration, and Development (MACIMIDE), UNSA Maastricht and UNU-MERIT aim to provide an objective picture on the topic of migration and offer new insights. To do so, different aspects around migration are analyzed and different perspectives are given on how states might deal with the influx of refugees in the future. In a number of lectures, experts will talk about topics such as myths and misconceptions in the area of migration, climate change, and migration, dealing with high displacement, gender and migration, citizenship, EU Asylum Law, and more. 

Maastricht Migration Lecture Series: Migration in Libya: From transit route to containment

The lecture on Migration in Libya: From transit route to containment took place on the 30th of September 2020. 

The lecture ‘Migration in Libya: From transit route to containment’ focussed on African and Middle Eastern migration flows to Libya and how the country’s posture toward these migrants have changed dramatically since the 2011 fall of dictator Muammar Gaddafi. While Libya once was a destination for foreign workers drawn by a strong economy, post-civil war, migrants have used the country as a transit point to set off for Europe—though as European borders have hardened since the 2015-16 migration crisis, many have been stranded and contained in Libya through the EU's external action policies. At present, a human rights crisis is enduring in Libya for migrants. This presentation contextualized the changing situation in Libya for migrants from 2011 to the present. The presentation was informed by original interviews conducted with Nigerian and Eritrean migrants that travelled through Libya from 2014-2016 and demonstrated the different situations faced by migrants in Libya.

About dr. Katie Kuschminder

Dr. Katie Kuschminder is an Assistant Professor at UNU-MERIT / Maastricht University. Katie's main research interests are in the areas of return and reintegration, irregular migrants journeys and migration governance. Katie has led migration projects for the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, German Development Cooperation, ILO, IOM, NWO and WODC. Currently, she is a Work-Package Lead on the H2020 Admigov project. In 2016 she was awarded a Rubicon Grant from the NWO and completed a two-year fellowship at the European University Institute.

​​​​​​​Maastricht Migration Lecture series: Cross-nationally comparative research on racial and ethnic skill disparities: questions, findings, and pitfalls

The third lecture of the Maastricht Migration lecture series ‘Cross-nationally comparative research on racial and ethnic skill disparities: questions, findings, and pitfalls’ was given by Prof. dr. Mark Levels, Professor of Health, Education and Work at Maastricht University on the 25th of November 2020. 

The lecture focussed on the racial and ethnic inequalities in skills and attitudes of children in primary and secondary education between 2000 and 2017, where it is seen that the successful participation of immigrant children and the children of immigrants in societies and labour market of western countries depends largely on their childhood experiences.

About Prof. dr. Mark Levels
Prof. dr. Mark Levels (1977) is a Professor of Health, Education and Work at Maastricht University. He is program director of the research program Health, Skills, and Inequality at the Research Centre for Education and the Labor Market (ROA) of Maastricht University, member of the ROA management team, a fellow of the Berlin Social Science Centre (WZB), a fellow of the Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE)of Maastricht University, and is a fellow of the Amsterdam Centre for Learning Analytics (ACLA). He teaches macrosociology at University College Maastricht (UCM).

Mark uses quantitative, qualitative and experimental sociological methods to study how individuals’ lives are shaped by government. He leads a large international research consortium that studies how governments can mediate the impact of AI and robotization on work, education, inequality, and welfare in Europe (TECHNEQUALITY). He is also one of the principal architects of the Nationaal Cohortonderzoek Onderwijs (NCO) and was appointed as one of the first national coordinators of the NCO with the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). The NCO is one of the largest and most comprehensive research efforts on education in the world. He also currently coordinates an international research group that studies individual and institutional determinants of youth inactivity in various countries (NEET).

Maastricht Migration Lecture Series: Does Citizenship Matter?

The second lecture of the Maastricht Migration Lecture Series ‘Does Citizenship Matter?’ was given by Maarten Vink, Professor of Political Sociology at the Department of Political Science on the 28th of October 2020. 

Does holding citizenship affect migrants’ life experience and, if so, how? In the lecture ‘Does Citizenship Matter?’, we discussed the controversial and complex relation between immigrant naturalization and life experiences within the host society. 

Click here to read more information

About Maarten Vink
Maarten Vink is Professor of Political Sociology at the Department of Political Science, Maastricht University, the Netherlands.

He leads the research project “Migrant Life Course and Legal Status Transition (MiLifeStatus)” funded by a Consolidator Grant of the European Research Council (2016-2021). He is one of the founders and was previously a Co-Director of the Maastricht Center for Citizenship, Migration and Development (MACIMIDE).

Numbers don't lie: lecture by Ionica Smeets on 25 March 2019

At the invitation of the MYA, mathematician and professor science communication Ionica Smeets gave a lecture on Monday 25 March 2019 called Ionica Smeets, Numbers don’t lie, in which she took the audience on a journey of discovery through the world of misleading figures and graphs.

 Read the interview with Ionica Smeets

Watch the summary of her lecture (video)