WUN in short

The WUN has identified four major Global Challenges  :

Each Global Challenge has networks of researchers working on a number of topics and sub-themes. WUN members can also bring in a topic themselves and create a network of WUN researchers. For more information on its existing research projects, please visit the WUN website   

Other Core Activities stimulated by WUN

  • Research Mobility Programme (RMP)
  • Research Development Fund (RDF)
  • Research programmes and Summer school exchange

WUN Research Mobility Programme

Call for applications
The WUN Research Mobility Programme (RMP) is an opportunity for Maastricht University PhD students or research staff in any academic discipline - in existing WUN research areas and new areas with the potential to develop a sustainable WUN collaboration - to apply for funding to visit any Worldwide Universities Network (WUN) partner university. The award aims to help facilitate research collaboration of early and mid-term career researchers leading to increased publishing, grant acquisition and training opportunities for all UM researchers

The RMP provides a great opportunity to: 

  • Advance your research by accessing research groups with expertise, rare facilities and data sets;
  • Widen the scope of research by establishing new and deepening existing links with your global peers;
  • Gain experience of new cultures by emerging yourself with new research environments;
  • Further your career development by strengthening your international profile.

Eligibility and Assessment criteria:

  • Be a UM PhD student or academic staff member
  • The research mobility should last a minimum of 4 weeks
  • Provide a support letter from a dean or scientific director on the importance of the project in relation to the existing research priorities of the university, faculty and department/school.
  • Provide a support letter from the host supervisor which confirms the approval of the host university to welcome the researcher should be attached to the application (The relevant contact person for WUN in each partner university can be found here.)
  • Fill in the WUN RMP application form
  • Should the applicant be awarded the grant he/she has to make use of it within 12 months from the date of receiving the award.

The programme is co-funded by the University Fund Limburg. The mission of the University Fund Limburg/SWOL is to support scientific research and education at Maastricht University.

In 2018 Mart van Dijk won a WUN grant to spend a period of time in at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) you can read about his trip here.

Selection procedure:

  • for the year 2019, four proposals will be awarded the grant
  • the grant will cover an international economy airfare and a contribution towards a subsistence cost (a maximum of 1.000 euros a month) for visits up to 3 months
  • the deadline to submit the proposal is 20 March 2019 at noon, the application needs to be complete with all relevant documentation attached
  • decisions are made by the WUN RMP Selection Committee
  • successful awardees are invited to a pre-departure meeting and required to submit a post-visit report within one month of return.

The application form should be sent electronically by email to Aisling Tiernan and handed in hardcopy to Aisling Tiernan (MUO Academic Affairs, MBB 4-6).

Research Development Fund

WUN re-invests a significant proportion of its membership fees to encourage international collaborative research. The Research Development Fund (RDF) is an annual competitive fund aimed at bringing together researchers to undertake innovative, high quality, sustainable research that addresses the four WUN global challenges:

In 2018, Maastricht University was rewarded RDF funding to lead two projects as principal investigator (P.I) as well as participate in two other projects, led by two other partner universities (University of Alberta and Bristol). The successful applicants leading 2 RDF projects for the UM are Dr. Annemarie Koster, Associate professor at FHML (CAPHRI) and Professor Shyama Ramani and Maria Tomai from UNU-MERIT.

Dr. Koster’s project will focus on developing a global platform to harmonize and share thigh-worn accelerometer data and will collaborate with the following WUN partners in this pursuit: The University of Sydney, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, University of Bristol

And University of Massachusetts Amherst. A number of non-WUN partners will also be collaborating in this project for example the National Centre for the Working Environment in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The second approved RDF project is on ‘’A Cross-National Study of Urban Solid Waste Management: Learnings and Way Forward’’. The main WUN partners in this project include The University of Ghana, University College Dublin and our strategic partner the University of York. Again, there will be non-WUN partners such as UNU-Flores.

Aside from these two leading projects, where the UM is the principle investigator, we will also participate in two other RDF projects led by other partner universities. These additional projects focus on the WUN theme of Understanding Cultures – the first looks at ‘’African Child and Youth Health in the Context of Migration and Displacement’’ led by the University of Alberta and represented by Prof. Valentina Mazzucato on the UM side. And a second project is on ‘’Memorials to people who have died and to those missing during migration’’ led by the University of Bristol and represented by Dr. Katie Kuschminder from the UM.

For more information on these RDF projects, please refer to the WUN website. This RDF fund is run on a yearly basis, usually launching in July and closing at the end of October. For more information on the Research Development Fund (RDF) and WUN activities at the UM, please contact Aisling Tiernan aisling.tiernan[at]maastrichtuniveristy[dot]nl.

Other projects that the university has been involved in through the RDF funding the past years include Community of Learning for African PhD fellows (2015) and Recommender Systems in Academia (2014).

Other activities Maastricht University participates in include:

  1. A Cross-National Study of Urban Solid Waste Management: Learnings and Way Forward (Maastricht)
  2. A global platform to harmonize and share thigh-worn accelerometer data: Towards the next generation of sedentary behaviour, physical activity, and sleep guidelines (Maastricht)
  3. African Child and Youth Wellbeing in the Context of Migration and Displacement (Alberta)
  4. A MOOC for WUN: Enabling collaborative education for heterogeneous groups around open research data and popular media (Southampton)
  5. Data Analysis with Privacy Protection for Epidemiological Research-DAPPER (Bristol)
  6. Early Life Opportunities for the Prevention of Non-communicable Disease in Developing Countries (Southampton)
  7. Feasibility Study of Recommender Systems in Academia (Maastricht)
  8. Global Africa Group (WUN Secretariat)
  9. Global China Group (WUN Secretariat)
  10. Health Education Literacy and Mobility for Musicians: A global approach (UWA)
  11. Health Literacy Network (Sydney)
  12. Health Promoting Responses to Climate Change (Auckland)
  13. Healthy-Polis – Developing Urban Lifecourse Approaches in response to Climate Change (Bristol)
  14. Home – Health Outcomes of Migration Events (Bristol)
  15. inVIVO Planetary Health (formerly in-FLAME - International Inflammation Network) (Western Australia)
  16. Managing the Globalization of Water Services in a World Affected by Climate Change: Regulatory and Economic Challenges (Chinese University of Hong Kong)
  17. Memorials to people who have died and to those missing during migration: a global project (Bristol)
  18. Migration Policy, Welfare Boundary, Social Integration & Health-related Quality of Life of Children from Immigrant Families (Chinese University of Hong Kong)
  19. Migration, Development and Global Transformations (MDGT/Bristol)
  20. Multilingualism and Mobility in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres (Sheffield)
  21. Open WUN (Southampton)
  22. Promoting wellbeing across borders: migration, social remittances and health (Sheffield)
  23. Schools as a Setting for Reducing Risk Factors for Non-communicable Diseases (Auckland)
  24. Understanding Globalization- Margins and Peripheries (Cape Town)
  25. Web Observatory Project (Southampton)

Information on all of these projects can be found here.

WUN also works with a number of knowledge partners to help foster its work internationally.

“Joining WUN”

  Maastricht University is very pleased to have joined the Worldwide Universities Network (WUN). It gives us a unique opportunity to connect with a selected number of international network universities who share our vision on research and education, while at the same time staying connected to their own region.
The research focus of WUN matches very well with the strategic themes of Maastricht University enhancing a content-guided cooperation with our network partners.  

Prof. Dr Martin Paul,
Maastricht University President


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