NWO Innovative Research Incentives Scheme

Vici Laureates


WhoResearch FacultyYear 
Wouter SchellartThe biggest mountains on Earth, the Andes and Himalaya, formed over tens of millions of years. The forces responsible for building these mountains remain unclear. Wouter Schellart investigates the role of subducting tectonic plates and deep mantle flow in constructing and shaping these spectacular mountain ranges.FELS2016
Chris OliversHumans can effectively scan their visual environment. Visual scanning is largely determined by peripheral vision – that is, what we can see from the corner of the eye. Chris Olivers investigates the relationship between peripheral perception and visual scanning in both behaviour and brain.FBMS2016
Agnes AkkermanAgnes Akkerman investigates how assertive employees are sometimes punished with poorer career chances or bullying by employers and colleagues. This research will reveal how and why the expression of dissatisfaction by employees is suppressed and what consequences this has.FSS2015
Bas van der KlaauwBas van der Klaauw studies how the mismatch between education and the labour market has consequences for the acquisition of human capital.FEBA2015
Anton Vonk NoordegraafAnton Vonk Noordegraaf studies patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension. In these patients the blood vessels of the lungs are constricted, which means that the right ventricle has to work harder. Prof. Vonk will investigate whether the right ventricle can be ‘saved’ using new medicines or via a mechanical device.VUmc2015
Guido van der WerfWorldwide an area the size of the EU is burnt each year. Using new methods Guido van der Werf will investigate how fires influence the climate. He will use data about variations in the number of fires since the Industrial Revolution and he will determine whether fires have contributed to anthropogenic climate change or actually attenuated this.FELS2015
 Sabine SpijkerAdaptation and plasticity of the brain is vital for adequate learning and adjustments in emotional processes. Sabine Spijker will study a new mechanism that encapsulates brain cells so that they are no longer capable of responding to stimuli in the environment. This results in emotional and memory problems.FELS2014
 Bas TeusinkCells often have to deal with suddenly changing conditions. Furthermore, the number of components in a cell, such as proteins or RNA molecules, can randomly differ slightly per cell. Bas Teusink investigates the regulatory systems of metabolism in yeast that lead to robust adaptations in such an uncertain world.FELS2014
 Jeroen Aerts 2014bJeroen Aerts Global risks of flooding have strongly increased, mainly because people have moved to low-lying areas and vulnerable cities. Researchers will examine how this trend is influenced by human actions, and whether there are opportunities to reverse this trend.FELS2013
 Herbert BosHerbert Bos Through security leaks hackers penetrate into our most essential computer systems. The researchers will improve the security testing of software by using 'profile sketches' of security leaks and new techniques for finding such profile sketches in existing software (for which the source code is of course not available).FS2013
 Marjolein van EgmondMarjolein van Egmond Our intestines accommodate many bacteria. A healthy immune system ensures that we do not become ill from these bacteria, whereas abnormal immune reactions can instead lead to chronic intestinal inflammation. This research will determine how the antibody IgA contributes to this balance.VUmc2013
 Huib MansvelderHuib Mansvelder Thinking requires concentration. By switching brain cells on and off with laser light in an animal that is trying to concentrate, researchers will investigate how networks of neurons in the prefrontal cortex bring about attention and control.FELS2013
 Danielle PosthumaDanielle Posthuma Many psychiatric diseases are caused by small errors in networks of genes. The researchers will devise new methods to detect these errors. It will also be investigated how all of these network errors can jointly lead to diseases such as schizophrenia, depression and autism.FELS2013
 Martine SmitMartine Smit Viruses produce receptor proteins that have been detected in brain tumours. How these viral proteins reprogram the cell and contribute to tumour growth will be unravelled. This knowledge is vital for the development of new strategies for the treatment of brain tumours.FS2013
 Wim van WestrenenWim van Westrenen Even though the moon is completely dry now, moonstone research has revealed that the moon did contain water four billion years ago. This project will investigate how much moon water there was, when this ended up in the moon and when it disappeared. This will give a new view on the earliest water cycle of our own planet, where all of the indications have disappeared as a result of erosion and plate tectonics.FELS2013
Jacintha Ellers investigates the driving forces and underlying mechanisms of trait loss and its evolutionary consequences in the context of ecological interactions.FELS2012
emptyThomas Spijkerboer's research is about the relation between migration law and the rising number of border deaths.LAW2012
 John Kennis investigates light-sensitive proteins with sophisticated laser techniques in order to steer life processes by means of light.FS2011 
 Lydia Krabbendam investigates to what extent cultural differences in social interactions can be observed at the level of the underlying mechanisms.FPE 2011 
 Jan Bouwe van den Berg combines abstract topological methods with computer assisted analysis to study the nonlinear dynamics of pattern formation.FS2011 
Roberta Croce investigates the fundamental processes of the light reactions of photosynthesis in plants and green algae.FS2010
Erwin Peterman will develop new microscopes to count and track individual motor proteins that drive living cells.FS2010
Sarah van Walsum's research project concerns migration and asylum law through the lens of (cross-border) family relations and family norms.LAW2010
Brenda Penninx examines whether depression accelerates the process of biological aging, and how this process can be stopped.VUmc2010 
Theo Smit investigates the process of self-organisation which gives rise to optimal structures in connective tissues like cartilage and bone.VUmc2010
Andre Lucas is developing new models to measure change processes, such as assessing economic risks (for example a financial crisis). FEBA 2009 
 Johannesde Boer uses optical echo for its research showing fabric in hollow bodies (lung, bowel, bladder) using small endoscopes.FOS 2009
empty emptyGijs Wuite examines the physics of DNA protein interactions and biomechanical characteristics of viral capsids and cells.FOS2008 
emptyBregje Onwuteaka-Philipsen investigates the perspectives of patients in the final phase of their lives, particularly in relation to the question of the personal dignity of their treatment.VUmc 2008 
emptyJeroen Smeets examines how we combine different types of information when making deliberate movements.FHMS2008 
Eus van Someren expertise covers sleep, circadian rhythms, cognition, aging, thermoregulation, imaging and acquisition, and analysis of physiological and behavioral time-series.VUmc 2007 
emptyKjeld Eikema investigates attosecond electron dynamics in biomolecules and fundamental physics in atoms, with the help of intense, ultrafast frequency comb lasers.FOS2007
emptyLuuk Visscher is working on the development of computer simulations that zoom in on the place of action in a complex molecular system.FOS2005
emptyReina Mebius examines developments in the immune system, with the emphasis on the formation of lymph nodes.VUmc2004
emptyGerard Steen conducts research on the use of metaphors in language, images, thought and communication in such genres as conversions, academic texts and literary fiction.
emptyRomano Orru investigates sustainable synthesis methods for making new molecules with applications in catalysis, medicines or high-quality materials.FOS2004
emptyRonald Meester conducts research on spatial stochastic processes. His interest lies in critical behaviour, scaling limits and stationary distributions.FOS2002
emptyMaurice Janssen examines how the interaction between electrons and atoms in a photochemical reaction can be manipulated.
emptyMatthias Bickelhaupt develops chemical theories and methods for rationally designing molecules, nano-structures and materials as well as chemical processes toward these compounds, based on quantum mechanics and computer simulations.FOS2002
emptyRonald Koes examines how the enormous morphological diversity of plant and animal species has come about through evolution and what genetic changes lie at the basis of this.FELS2002