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Veni grants awarded to ten University of Groningen and UMCG researchers

15 July 2016

Ten researchers from the University of Groningen and the University Medical Center Groningen have been awarded a Veni grant as part of the Innovational Research Incentives Scheme run by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and the universities. The personal Veni grants are worth up to a maximum of € 250,000 and enable talented researchers who have just completed a PhD to conduct research of their own choice.

The grants awarded to the University of Groningen and UMCG are:

  • Attacking the bacterial sweet spot

Dr. M.T.C. (Marthe) Walvoort (f), RUG – Chemistry
Bacteria display a diverse array of exotic sugars that are absent from humans. These sugars play a crucial role in infection and bacterial survival. Using chemistry and biology, the researchers will explore a novel sugar modification with the aim to attack this bacterial sweet spot in the fight against infection.

Staff Page Marthe Walvoort

Walvoort
  • Are there other universes?

Dr. S.M. Friederich, (m), RUG - Philosophy
Some philosophers and physicists think so. According to them, the existence of other universes can explain why there is at least one---our own---that is hospitable to life. This multiverse idea leads straight into a minefield of epistemological challenges---all systematically tackled by this project.

Staff Page Simon Friederich

dr. S.M. (Simon) Friederich
  • Weighing evidence reliably

Dr L. (Leah) Henderson (f), RUG – Philosophy
We learn from what others tell us all the time. Yet others are not always reliable. This research investigates the basic principles behind how should we take appropriate account of the reliability of our sources of information. It applies these principles to practical problems in scientific and legal policy.

Staff Page Leah Henderson

  • Relativism in Ancient Philosophy

Dr. T. (Tamer) Nawar (m), RUG — Philosophy
The idea that truth and morality are relative, not objective, originated in ancient Greece and has divided thinkers ever since. But how can something be ‘true for someone’? What implications are there if morality is relative? This project will offer the first systematic examination of relativism in Greco-Roman philosophy.

Staff Page Tamer Nawar

Dr. T. (Tamer) Nawar
Dr. T. (Tamer) Nawar
  • Hellenistic Mesopotamia

Dr. R.P. (Rocco) Palermo (m), RUG – Archeology
Alexander the Great created the very first global world and his successors ruled over several modern nations from Europe to Asia. In this project I will investigate the impact of the Seleucid imperial power on the rural landscape of Mesopotamia through the analysis of newly collected evidence by multiple archaeological projects in Iraqi Kurdistan.

Staff Page Rocco Palermo

  • Manipulating Spiritual Matter. How did Early Modern Science Become Experimental?

Dr. D.C. (Doina-Cristina) Rusu (f), RUG – Philosophy
The emergence of experimental philosophy in the seventeenth century is linked with the adoption of a corpuscularian matter theory. However, experiments were used before corpuscularianism. This project studies how the concept of ‘spirits’ allowed the transition from the Aristotelian-scholastic matter theory to corpuscularianism, giving birth to the new experimental science.

Staff Page Doina-Cristina Rusu

  • Matter over mind: Skinner, Quine, and the Heyday of Behaviorism

Dr. A.A. Verhaegh (Sander) (m), RUG – Philosophy
Twentieth-century psychology and philosophy were dominated by behaviorism. The leading scholars were B.F. Skinner and W.V. Quine. How did they develop their theories? How did they influence each other? And what are the implications for the relation between psychology and philosophy? This projects answers these questions by examining their archives.

  • Information storage at the nano-scale

Dr S. (Saeedeh) Farokhipoor (f), RUG - Physics
Ever-smaller electronic components cannot be manufactured using current technology. Scientists will explore the self-assembly of miniature capacitors in novel materials, for information storage. Reduction of both size and power consumption enables advances in electronics to continue well into the future.

  • Energy crisis in the failing heart

Dr. B.D. (Daan) Westenbrink (m), UMCG - Cardiology
Heart failure is a deadly disease of which the cause has not been unraveled yet. We do know that the energy reserves stored in the heart out. The investigators will try to find whether inhibition of mitochondria, the power stations of the heart, is at the heart of the problem.

  • Dissecting the effects of brown adipose tissue on the vessel wall

Dr Y. (Yanan) Wang (f), University Medical Center Groningen - Pediatrics
Brown adipose tissue is an emerging target to combat cardiometabolic disease. This project aims to dissect the mechanism(s) how brown adipose tissue activation attenuates atherosclerosis.

Last modified:05 April 2019 11.50 a.m.
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