Call for Visiting Scientists 2019

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Call 2019-1

The objectives of the PE&RC Visiting Scientist grants are to stimulate scientific quality of research within PE&RC and to strengthen international relations. The focus is on innovative projects that have the potential to develop into long(er) term collaborations. Grants are meant for excellent scientists from abroad who want to work for a period of up to 6 months at Wageningen University (e.g. as part of a sabbatical). Grants for Dutch scientists who work abroad are also possible.

Joint applications of Wageningen University groups with one or more of the collaborative partners (Wageningen Research, NIOO, Naturalis Biodiversity Center, UU, UVA, VU) are possible, and are encouraged. For all applications it is a prerequisite that the proposed research has to fit within the mission of PE&RC and its research themes (see below).

There are 3 categories:
  1. Grants for international top scientists in a specific research area for a period of 2-4 weeks (often as part of a workshop). The research grant involves max. € 4000 and can also include material costs related to the organization of a workshop. Expenses are reimbursed based on real costs. A detailed budget should be attached to the application.
  2. Grants with a duration of 1-6 months of € 1400 per month plus a contribution to travel costs of max € 1000 (based on real costs). The candidate should have a PhD title plus at least 3 years postdoctoral experience or must have shown long-term experience as senior scientist. The € 1400 per month is meant to cover expenses in the Netherlands (such as housing).
  3. Grants with a duration up to 3 months of € 1400 per month plus a contribution to travel costs of max. € 1000 (based on real costs) meant to write a personal grant application to NWO (Rubicon, VENI or VIDI) or EU (ERC or Mme Curie IF). The € 1400 per month is meant to cover expenses in the Netherlands (such as housing) in 2018/2019.

Note that funding of fellowships is increasingly based on actual costs for travel and housing up to a maximum depending on the type of fellowship (due to fiscal regulations).This applies to most EU-citizens but may also apply to non-EU scientists from specific countries. In these cases a proof of expenses made is needed. 

The available budget for this 2019-1 call is approx. € 45000. The application forms include a description of specific qualities of the candidate (max 250 words) and a description of the cooperation with the candidates and research and educational activities (Cat. A and B, max 250 words each) or a research outline (Cat. C., max 1000 words). Candidates will be evaluated in the context of the call category to wish they would like to respond. The evaluation criteria are:

Category A and B

Criteria used for assessment of proposals are:

  • The quality of the candidate as shown in a Curriculum Vitae and publication list (weight 40%).
  • The long-term strategic importance of collaboration with the research institute or university of the candidate. The proposal must show why the long-term collaboration with this institute is important (weight 20%).
  • The quality and relevance of the proposal to PE&RC research themes (weight 30%)
  • The contribution to PE&RC education (e.g. master class workshop, course, seminar) (weight 10%; the contribution will be considered in relation to the duration of the stay).


  • With respect to each of the four criteria assessed, proposals must pass a threshold of  3 (= acceptable on a scale of 1 to 5). Therefore, if one of the criteria is not well elaborated the proposal will not be funded.
  • Regarding category A and B: Only one proposal for each collaborative partner abroad will be eligible for funding.
  • For both category A and B it is not possible for a candidate to receive a research grant two times within a period of 5 years.
  • If granted, PE&RC expects a report from the applicants after the fellowship has ended, in which activities of the candidate in Wageningen, results of the stay and the additional value of the fellowship to the research group(s) involved as well as PE&RC are described.
  • An application form can be downloaded here. When granted, the budget for the fellowship will become available in 2019 and will be transferred to the group or person concerned. The visit should start at latest March 2020.
Category C

The candidate must have a PhD degree and fulfil the conditions of the call (s)he is aiming for.

Assessment criteria:

  • The quality of the candidate as shown in a Curriculum Vitae and publication list.
  • Quality, innovative nature and academic impact of the proposed research.
  • Output of the stay must be a personal grant application as indicated in the proposal (to be submitted in the forthcoming round).

An application form can be downloaded here. When granted, the budget for the fellowship will become available in 2019 and will be transferred to the group or person concerned. The visit should start at latest March 2020.

Research themes PE&RC


  1. Learning from nature

The mission of the theme is to better understand the effects of environmental, socioeconomic and genetic factors on the functioning of individuals, species and ecosystems to increase their productivity, improve their services, and preserve their diversity.
This enables the development of (i) multifunctional, resource-efficient and resilient land use systems and (ii) strategies to manage, conserve and improve biodiversity, resilience, and biological interactions in (semi)natural ecosystems.
The theme intends to fulfil the abovementioned mission by addressing the following objectives:
a. Improving the understanding of the biological processes (genetic, physiological, evolutionary and ecological) that drive the functioning of individuals, species and ecosystems;
b. Assessing the impact on ecosystems (functioning and composition) of past, current, and future environmental and socioeconomic changes;
c. Combining both pieces of knowledge to design strategies for resilient, productive, resource-efficient, “circular” man-made ecosystems and the conservation of (semi-) natural

  1. Global change, food and the environment

The objective of the theme is to develop and apply methods for analysing and adapting agricultural systems (nested sub-systems and their feedbacks) in multifunctional rural landscapes subject to global change and changing societal demands and expectations. The theme aims at understanding and design of sustainable and resilient production systems, connecting the soil, crop, farm, regional and global scales. Production systems include crop production systems, mixed crop-livestock systems, agroforestry and perennials. The mission is translated in three main research lines, with sustainable intensification at the core, soil functioning as a basis, and radical redesign to transform food systems.

  1. One health

Humans, crops, livestock and wildlife are constantly being challenged by pests, parasites and pathogens causing emerging diseases. The mission and overall objective of the One Health theme is to improve a deeper understanding of the ecological, evolutionary and molecular processes that influence entry, establishment, and spread. This will test current hypotheses of biological disease interactions and, crucially, shall to contribute to the development of prevention and control measures.

  1. Methodology and technology

The theme embraces data science and evolving technologies to provide objective, reproducible and searchable structured information to serve agro-environmental science research and applications. The theme works at multiple levels, covering the entire lifecycle of environmental data analysis: from system design and control to efficient data collection strategies using novel technologies and the development of models for fundamental knowledge discovery (learning, model and bio-inspired). The theme pursues research at different, intertwined levels. Its developments span from pure core methodological research (from control engineering, to sensor technology and modeling) to its integration into interdisciplinary projects in genetics, forestry, agriculture and urbanism.

The application form, the Curriculum Vitae and a publication list of the candidate have to be mailed to PE&RC Office (

Applications for visiting scientist grants should be received by PE&RC at the latest on April 15, 2019 (9.00 a.m.). Applications have to be supported by the head of a Wageningen University chair group.