NWO's Rubicon programme gives young promising scientists the opportunity to gain international research experience. Six laureates are going to the United Kingdom (of whom three to Cambridge and one to Oxford); four to the United States (two to Harvard); three to Switzerland; and the remaining four to Japan, Austria, Denmark and Israel. Of the 77 applications, 22% received scholarships from the science funder.
The researchers, all of them recent PhD graduates, will research a range of topics including climate change, inequality in juvenile law, invisible gravitational waves in the Milky Way, the use of artificial intelligence in improving echography, and electrical currents in quantum materials. This last subject is that of TU Delft researcher Giordano Mattoni who recently earned his doctorate at the Faculty of Applied Sciences.
New types of electronics
Electrical currents are the drivers of conventional electronic apparatuses. But what happens if current runs through unconventional quantum materials? Mattoni will demonstrate that this could be the start of new magnetic and superconducting materials that will open the door to new types of electronics.
Of the 32 research applications submitted by women, NWO honoured 21.9%, and of the 45 applications submitted by men, 22.1%. The level of funding depends on the chosen destination and the length of stay. Every year, NWO funds about 60 young researchers amounting to about EUR 7 million divided among three rounds.
The Rubicon scholarships are highly valued among the winners. They give science in the Netherlands a goldmine of international experience for a relatively small investment.
HOP / Delta, Tomas van Dijk