Enabling Technologies Hotel call 2017 open

ZonMw has just opened the ‘Enabling Technologies Hotels Call 2017’. Life science researchers can apply for funding to get access to the high-end equipment and expertise of 120+ public and private Technology Hotels that are listed on the DTL website. “With a EUR 1.8 million budget, the 2017 programme has twice the budget of the previous call,” says Dr Sander Hougee, Programme Officer Life Sciences and Health at ZonMw. The deadline for applications is 29 August 2017 at 14:00.

Find your Technology Hotel.

Read details about the call.

Sander Hougee
Sander Hougee

Hougee explains: “The Enabling Technologies Hotel (ETH) programme offers scientists access to a variety of high-quality Dutch life sciences facilities and expertise. The programme has a high success rate of 40-50% and frequently results in follow-up projects. The 2017 programme has twice the budget of the previous call. We will award approximately sixty projects with a maximum of EUR 30k each.”

The ETH programme is financially supported by ZonMw and NWO Domain Science and is endorsed by the Top sectors Life Sciences & Health, Agri & Food, and Horticulture & Starting Materials. Prof. dr. Jan Raaijmakers, chairman of the board of the Top sector Life Sciences & Health and chairman of the ETH programme committee: “Since the beginning of the programme in 2013, I have been a big supporter as it is one of the few programmes that drives the broader use of high-end technologies in the Netherlands.”

New features

ZonMw has evaluated the previous ETH calls in 2016 and has adapted the current call accordingly. Hougee: “In the previous ETH calls, it was mandatory for projects to be incorporated in an existing public-private partnership. In the evaluation, it was widely expressed that the programme should be open for projects outside this public-private partnership setting, which was also asked for by the programme committee. So, for the next round, we have made this possible. The 2017 budget will be evenly distributed over two different types of research projects. Half the budget will be spent on so-called ‘early career scientist projects’, where it is not necessary to involve a company as co-applicant. The main applicant should be a scientist at a Dutch academic research organisation who obtained a PhD in 2009-present.” Raaijmakers: “I am very positive that we now have a possibility for scientists in their early career to embed high-end technologies in their research. This also nicely fits with the ‘human capital agenda’ of the top sectors.”

Public-private projects

The second half of the budget is dedicated to public-private projects, i.e., collaborations between academic and industrial scientists. Hougee: “Our evaluation also revealed that the actual involvement of companies in the projects was limited in the past, in spite of the public-private partnership setting. Therefore, projects in a public-private setting are now asked to include the company as co-applicant. These companies are required to provide 10% co-funding in cash and/or in kind. The main applicant is a scientist at a Dutch academic research organisation, but there are no restrictions regarding the time since the PhD defence of the applicant.”

Jan Raaijmakers
Jan Raaijmakers

Data management plan

In the previous calls, researchers had to submit a data management plan as part of their project proposal. The evaluation revealed that this procedure did not sufficiently contribute to good data stewardship.

Hougee: “We found out that the data management plan assessment did not allow for enough dialogue. In addition, ZonMw has updated its data management policy in 2016: only granted projects need to submit a data management plan before they start. This creates more opportunities for dialogue, which is important in the dynamic environment of data management. We will implement this new ZonMw policy in the current ETH call.”

“The ETH programme now stimulates the dissemination of the unique technological expertise that is available at both academic and industrial life science organisations in the Netherlands,” concludes Raaijmakers.

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