21 research consortia that the University of Groningen is closely involved in will be teaming up to conduct interdisciplinary research, with the goal of facilitating scientific and societal breakthroughs. Partners in the project include the entire knowledge chain and societal organizations, both public and private. These close partnerships will receive a total of 91 million euros in funding for projects in the second round within the Dutch Research Agenda programme of the Dutch Research Council (NWA): Research along Routes by Consortia (ORC).
Productive and interdisciplinary cooperation is necessary to pave the way for societal breakthroughs. Consortia of researchers and societal partners from the public and semi-public sectors and the business community will therefore join forces and work together intensively on designing, conducting and applying research.
The projects awarded funding focus on societal issues, that form the substantive agenda of the NWA. Examples include research into how black holes evolve, the return of colonial heritage, water management at the foot of the Himalayas, our biological clock and an open source quantum computer in the cloud.
UG researchers are involved in the following research projects slated to receive grants:
Chemists, biologists and physicists together will be researching the limits of the growth of cells – and the knowledge acquired will be used to solve a large number of societal issues. The general public will be involved through innovative science communication. Grant amount: 1.8 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Professor M. (Matthias) Heinemann – University of Groningen.
Research into a legal system of protective measures for the elderly, with a focus on empowerment of this group. Grant amount: 1.9 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Professor M.V. (Masha) Antokolskaia – VU Amsterdam.
Living dikes, in which the dike and the foreland are covered with grass, contribute to making the coastline climate-proof. This project aims to study how these dikes were constructed and how effective they are, for example under extreme weather conditions. Grant amount: 1.9 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Dr B.W. (Bas) Borsje – University of Twente.
Deep learning creates high-quality AI models that have a significant impact. New responsibilities and questions arise, but deep learning is sometimes difficult to understand. The consortium studies how deep learning can be made transparent and explicable for the purpose of speech, text and music. Grant amount: 1.9 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Dr W.H. (Jelle) Zuidema – University of Amsterdam
This project is about the role colonial collections can play in resolving tensions between all possible stakeholders in reckoning with our colonial past. Which new forms of ownership are possible and desirable? Grant amount: 3.5 million euros. Coordinator on behalf of the consortium: Prof. S. (Susan) Legêne – VU Amsterdam.
Emerging antimicrobial resistance (AMR) will make antibiotics far less effective in infection prevention and treatment. DARTBAC will develop antimicrobial technologies that are not based on antibiotics to tackle this problem. DARTBAC will jointly bring the entire knowledge chain together for the development of new materials technologies for combating AMR. Grant amount: 9.7 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Prof. J.J.C. (Chris) Arts – Maastricht UMC
In co-creation with stakeholders, the consortium is developing the world’s first Virtual Human Platform for the assessment of the safety of chemicals and medicines based on human biology. Through innovations in data sciences, human tissue culture models and the integration of transition management, we are accelerating the transition to animal-free safety assessments. Grant amount: 9.9 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Prof. J. (Juliette) Legler – Utrecht University.
Our biological clocks get disrupted in our 24-hour society. This increases the risk of mental and physical health problems and is a worldwide threat to biodiversity. The researchers want to develop strategies for keeping our biological clocks healthy. Grant amount: 9.7 million euros. Coordinator for the consortium: Prof. J.H. (Joke) Meijer – Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC
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