35 jonge onderzoekers aan de slag met Onderzoekstalent

24 juni 2014

In de ronde 2014 van het financieringsinstrument Onderzoekstalent zijn 35 aanvragen van de 132 ingediende onderzoeksvoorstellen gehonoreerd. Hiertoe heeft het Gebiedsbestuur van NWO Maatschappij- en Gedragswetenschappen onlangs besloten.

Onderzoekstalent is een financieringsinstrument met vrije competitie voor hoogwaardig promotieonderzoek voor jonge talenten die een aantoonbare ambitie hebben een carrière als wetenschapper op te bouwen. In deze ronde was 5,3 miljoen euro beschikbaar. 

Hieronder vindt u de samenvattingen van de gehonoreerde aanvragen gesorteerd op achternaam van de hoofdaanvrager.

Gehonoreerde aanvragen

Our predictive mind and its flaws in agency processing Prof. dr. H.A.G. Aarts, Universiteit Utrecht, Sociale & Organisatiepsychologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. M. Dogge MSc
The perceived intensity of effects that result from one's own actions is attenuated compared to externally generated effects. This sensory-attenuation effect is central to our ability to experience agency over directly and indirectly caused sensations, and to distinguish these outcomes from those produced by other agents. Accordingly, effective agency processing is essential for human functioning in society. In this project, we address a set of new research questions to more fully understand and examine the contribution of motor prediction and non-motor prediction processes to attenuation of self-produced outcomes, as well as their role in delusions of control in schizophrenia patients.

Against all odds: How cross-sector collaboration platforms catalyze change in sustainable trade
Dr. ir. F.G.A. de Bakker, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Organisatiewetenschappen
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. I. van Hille MSc
Cross-sector collaboration platforms are widely acknowledged as crucial for catalyzing global change; however, they often have limited impact, even yielding unintended, irrational outcomes. Moreover, initiators of change often occupy a marginal position, facing an uphill battle to modify social norms. Nonetheless, pressing societal problems such as sustainable trade require cross-sector collaboration. Therefore, there is an urgent need to understand how marginal stakeholders catalyze change through such cross-sector collaborative platforms. We study a worldwide platform toward the acceleration of sustainable trade, providing important insights into how marginal actors can effectuate social change, defying the odds of established norms and dominant stakeholders.

Leaders at the Helm? Responsive Leadership and Policy Change during the Euro-crisis
Prof. dr. R.A. Boin, Universiteit Utrecht, Bestuurs- & Organisatiewetenschap
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. H.P.A. van Overvest MSc
The Eurozone crisis shows that, in their efforts to reform policy, European leaders are constrained by public discourses about macroeconomic policy and European integration. Yet they are also the actors best placed to change those discourses. The proposed research studies the patterns of adopting and adapting existing discourses that EU leaders displayed during the course of the Euro-crisis, and how these can be best explained. Insights yielded by this study can have important political and social implications by contributing to greater responsiveness of European leadership, better utilization of macro-economic expertise in EU policy making and improving trans-boundary crisis management.

Competing sovereignties in the political construction of food sovereignty
Dr. S.M. Borras, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam, International Institute of Social Studies
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. C. Schiavoni
The dominant research on food sovereignty is too ?nonstate actor-focused?, ignoring the role of the state despite recent developments where states have taken co-ownership of the food sovereignty political project. We will study the under-explored ?competing sovereignties? held by state and societal actors that cut across institutions, scales and geographies, to help understand how food sovereignty is actually constructed and contested. This project will examine the possibilities and limits of food sovereignty as an innovative political project by studying Venezuela (urban society) and Bolivia (agrarian society), where food sovereignty experiments have been underway amid dynamic shifts in state-society relations.

The role of social cognition in the development of reading comprehension abilities: Evidence from behavioral, eye-tracking, and neuroimaging methods 
Prof. dr. P.W. van den Broek, Universiteit Leiden, Pedagogische Wetenschappen
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. M. Pavias
Reading comprehension skills are usually acquired in the context of narratives, whose understanding requires social cognitive abilities such as perspective taking. This project combines insights from developmental cognitive neuroscience and research on reading comprehension to determine the cognitive and neural bases of the development of reader characteristics that contribute to text comprehension in childhood and adolescence. The role of the development of social cognition will be examined using behavioral, eyetracking,as well as functional MRI techniques. This project has the potential to have tremendous theoretical impact, and ultimately could inform instructional practice in schools.

Enforcing the European Union fundamental values
Prof. dr. M.L.H.K. Claes, Maastricht University, Internationaal en Europees Recht
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. M. Bonelli
This project will analyze the role of the EU in safeguarding the fundamental values on which the Union is founded, as recognized by the Treaty on the European Union: democracy, rule of law and human rights. The recent constitutional crises in Hungary and Romania demonstrate the legal problems the EU faces to effectively intervene in what are considered internal affairs of a Member State. Adopting an innovative comprehensive approach, this research project will analyze and assess the enforcement mechanisms that are currently available, and discuss whether, and if so how, a more effective monitoring and enforcement system should be introduced.

Overcoming affective biases of decision-making: Combining neurophysiology, neurostimulation and computational psychology 
Prof. dr. R. Cools, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, Cognitive Neuroimaging
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. J.C. Swart
It feels like we are in control of our actions and take decisions rationally. Yet many of our responses are innately specified and strongly influenced by emotional and affective biases. We propose to elucidate the mechanism underlying our ability to overcome these biases by integrating hitherto segregated literatures on (i) the neural systems of learning/decision making, notably the ventral striatum, and (ii) the neural systems of cognitive control, notably the prefrontal cortex. We will use a state of the art multidisciplinary approach in which we combine sophisticated psychological task-design with simultaneous EEG/fMRI and intracranial recording from and stimulation of the ventral striatum.

Time is memory: temporal context processing in the hippocampus
Dr. C.F.A. Doeller, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. L.S. Schürmann
Episodic memory is a hallmark of cognition and comprises remembered events embedded within a spatiotemporal context. Despite a wealth of research on spatial representations, little is known about how the human brain encodes temporal aspects of memories. By combining functional neuroimaging, multivoxel pattern-analyses and novel behavioural tasks, we aim to characterize (1) the neural mechanisms underlying time processing, (2) how these temporal representations relate to sequential episodic information and (3) how temporal and spatial context processing converge in hippocampal subfields. This project will expand understanding of mnemonic representations in the brain, with implications for research on normal and pathological ageing.

How Does Surprise Alter Internal Brain State and Learning?
Dr. T.H. Donner, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Psychonomie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. T. Meindertsma
Surprise (i.e., violation of our expectation) is frequent in our daily life and crucial for adaptive behavior. Surprise allows us to construct and maintain an accurate internal model of our ever-changing environment. Following surprise, our sensitivity to environmental events and learning rate are boosted. This implies that surprise alters the internal state of the brain. What is this state change, does it generalize across forms of surprise, which neurotransmitter systems mediate it, and how does it boost sensitivity and learning? We will tackle these questions through a combination of computational, neurophysiological (MEG), pupillometric, and pharmacological techniques in the human brain.

Controlling business cartels: how corporations control cartels in illegality
Dr. J.G. van Erp, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam, Criminologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. J. Jaspers MSc
Business cartels cause severe financial damage and harm consumer trust; cartel enforcement authorities use heavy penalties and leniency in their efforts to control cartel behaviour. However, corporations react to increased external control by strengthening the internal control of cartels. Therefore, sanctions not always deter sufficiently, and cartelists use the leniency arrangement strategically. This project empirically investigates internal control mechanisms in cartels. Through case studies of detected cartels and interviews with insiders, we aim to answer the question when external control of cartels undermines the internal control within cartels, or what forms of internal control make cartels impenetrable by external control.

The Geography of User Involvement in Transitions towards Sustainability: The Case of Electric Vehicles
Prof. dr. K. Frenken , Universiteit Utrecht , Innovatiestudies
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. T. Meelen MSc
This study investigates the role of users in the emergence and up-scaling of sustainable innovations across local, national and international scales. The theoretical framework integrates the niche-regime scheme from the sustainability transitions literature with proximity and user innovation literatures. We test hypotheses regarding the geography of user interaction and its effects on Electric Vehicle ownership in The Netherlands using a unique combination of data on adoption, socio-demographics, local policies and user needs. Results will inform firms, users and policy-makers aiming to advance of sustainable innovation in general, and the further adoption of Electric Vehicles in particular.

Improving supranational adjudication in fundamental rights cases. Towards a procedural approach for the European Court of Human Rights 
Prof. dr. mr. J.H. Gerards, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, Staats- en bestuursrecht 
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. A.S. Florescu LLM
The European Court of Human Rights is of great importance to the protection of individuals? most valuable rights. The Court is currently under great pressure, however, because of its heavy caseload and because of criticism of its interference with national policies. One important bone of contention is the Court?s practice of a substantive-type proportionality review, which means it evaluates the reasonableness of national decisions. The current project proposes to contribute to solving the Court?s problems by investigating the possibilities for a shift towards a procedural-type of review, which would focus on the quality of national decision-making. 

Successful aging in the information society: Sensory modality as a key to understanding and improving selective attention in aging and dementia
Dr. P.W.M. van Gerven, Maastricht University, Neuropsychology & Psychopharmacology
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. F. Dieckmann MSc
In our information society, attending to relevant information while ignoring distracting information has become a true challenge, especially for the growing number of older people and, even more so, for older people with cognitive impairments or dementia. We recently showed that, in normal aging, the impact of this information challenge depends on the sensory modality conveying relevant or distracting information. We aim at extending this notion by establishing the role of sensory modality in selective attention for patients with impending Alzheimer?s disease and by investigating the possibility of improving selective attention and related cognitive functions through an intensive training program.

The Pillars of Perception - Studying the constructive nature of visual motion perception at columnar and laminar resolution in the human brain
Prof. dr. R.W. Goebel, Maastricht University, Cognitive Neuroscience
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. M. Schneider BA
Many mechanisms underlying perception materialize in microscopic cortical ensembles, as known from animal physiology. Yet insufficient spatial and functional resolution has hitherto limited their exploration in humans. We propose three proof-of-concept studies using ultra-high field fMRI to investigate columnar and laminar mechanisms underlying visual motion perception. Using bistable stimuli and columnar-level neurofeedback, we probe the functional relevance of axis-of-motion columns for the perceived direction of motion. Furthermore, we explore the laminar interaction of sensory input and cognitive prediction during the perception of apparent and real motion. The proposed studies break ground for novel neuroscientific research and clinical real-time fMRI applications.

When MEPs go national: legislative behaviour in the European Parliament
Dr. A. Hakhverdian, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Politicologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. H. van der Veer MSc
Legislative behaviour of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) can be motivated by both ideological and national concerns. Existing studies find mixed and at times conflicting evidence as to which of these determinants best explain MEP behaviour. This research project aims to reconcile some of these tensions by studying the conditions under which MEPs decide to ?go national?. These conditions include variations in policy domains, party groups and national political cultures. The results should shed light on the national dimension of EP policymaking at a time when EU institutions induce increasing distrust from considerable segments of the European electorate.

Anticipative robust decision making with optimal learning
Prof. dr. ir. D. den Hertog, Tilburg University, CentER Center for Economic Research
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. F.J.C.T. de Ruiter MSc
Adjustable robust optimization (ARO) is a technique to solve multistage optimization problems. In ARO, the decision in each stage is a function of the information accumulated in previous stages, which is assumed to be exact. The proposed research extends the ARO framework threefold. First, we extend it such that inexact data may be used in the decision rules. Second, we develop methods to make ARO anticipative by using better forecasts in the decision rules. Finally, we link the fields of ARO and optimal learning: Which strategy to apply if one has the opportunity to reduce uncertainty against certain costs?

Monetary and fiscal policy under bounded rationality and heterogeneous expectations
Prof. C.H. Hommes, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Kwantitatieve Economie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. J. Lustenhouwer MSc
Traditionally the macro economy and monetary and fiscal policy are modelled under the assumption of rational expectation. Surveys of professional forecasters and laboratory experiments show however considerable heterogeneity in macroeconomic forecasts. This project studies monetary and fiscal policy in macro models within a new paradigm and under more realistic assumptions of bounded rationality and heterogeneous expectations. We investigate the effectiveness of monetary policy, e.g. inflation targeting and a zero lower bound on the interest rate, under heterogeneous expectations. We will also study, in theory, experiments and empirical work, the effectiveness of fiscal policy to escape from an economic crisis.

Temptation and restraint: The role of reward and punishment sensitivity in disordered eating
Prof. dr. P.J. de Jong, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Klinische Ontwikkelings Psychologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. N.C. Jonker BSc
Overeating/overweight is a mounting problem for public health. Why are so many people unable to restrict their food-intake? And how can this be reconciled with the other end of the spectrum where Anorexia patients can control their food-intake to the point where it results in life-threatening complications? To elucidate these puzzling observations, we test the hypothesis that individual differences in sensitivity for cues signaling reward and punishment play a critical role in people?s (in)ability to regulate food-intake. We will test the prognostic value of these characteristics for developing under/overweight and test a clinical intervention to counteract these sensitivities.

From Reading to Feeling: How Exposure to Literary Fiction May Enrich Emotional Understanding among Alexithymic Individuals
Dr. S.L. Koole, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Klinische Psychologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. D. Samur
Alexithymia is a personality dimension characterized by difficulties in emotion processing. Although alexithymia is implicated in many psychological problems, like depression and autism, it is unclear how high-alexithymic individuals might overcome their emotion-processing deficits. To fill this gap, the present proposal advances the idea that alexithymic individuals may be helped by reading literary fiction, which challenges them to consider unfamiliar feelings and experiences. This idea will be tested in behavioral experiments and neuro-imaging studies on the effects of reading literature among individuals varying in alexithymia. These studies will create a new interface between cognitive-affective neuroscience and empirical literature studies.

Young Adults’ Construction of Differentiated Citizenship in a Post-Conflict State: The ‘In-Between Generation’ between National and Local Levels in Timor-Leste
Prof. dr. C.G. Koonings, Universiteit Utrecht, Culturele Antropologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. S. ten Brinke MSc
Theories of citizenship have often stressed the relation between individuals and states, their rights and responsibilities. Consequently, relationships of governance on sub-state and community levels are neglected. This research aims to analyze how young adults construct citizenship in the space between national and local forms of governance, in the post-conflict and post-colonial context of Timor-Leste. Using qualitative and participatory methods, these processes will be analyzed through the perspectives of young citizens themselves. Young adults in Timor-Leste occupy the position of an ?in-between-generation?. Hence, their perspectives illuminate both from inside and outside the process of citizenship construction in a post-conflict nation-state.

Closing the regulatory cycle? Ex-post legislative evaluation in the European Union
Prof. dr. A.C.M. Meuwese, Dr. E. Mastenbroek (co-promotor), Prof. dr. S. van Thiel (co-promotor), Tilburg University, Staatsrecht en Bestuursrecht 
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. S. van Voorst
The European Union suffers from a pressing legitimacy deficit, due to its weak democratic credentials. It thus must build legitimacy differently: by ensuring that its laws effectively solve societal problems. A crucial instrument for enhancing problem-solving effectiveness is ex-post evaluation of legislation. Surprisingly, there is no systematic empirical knowledge of this crucial last stage of the regulatory cycle. This project will describe and explain how often and how well the European Commission evaluates its legislation ex-post. It will do so using two novel datasets, and an innovative theoretical framework integrating insights from public administration, political science, and EU law.

Vulnerability is dynamic: Enhancing adaptive governance to climate change for Caribbean tourism through interactive modelling
Prof. dr. ir. A.P.J. Mol, Wageningen Universiteit, Milieubeleid
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. J. Student MSc
Millions of tourists visit Caribbean islands annually to enjoy resort properties, beaches and coral reefs. Coastal tourism destinations, however, are under threat from climate change manifested by sea level rise and intensifying hurricanes. Adaptation is crucial to limit the harm to local people. Tourism adaptation policies are informed by an expanding yet static scientific understanding of the ecological and social vulnerabilities involved. This research takes a dynamic approach and uses agent-based modelling (ABM) to engage local actors in interactive modelling to analyse vulnerability and adaptive governance strategies as they change over time in response to natural processes and social interactions.

Consumer Search, Quality Provision and the Efficiency of Frictional Markets
Prof. dr. J.L. Moraga González, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Algemene en Ontwikkelingseconomie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. Y. Sun
A great deal of the trading of commodities, products and assets takes place in decentralized markets. Two important frictions are simultaneously present in decentralized markets: search frictions and asymmetric information. We will develop further the theoretical microeconomics literature by modeling the interplay between search costs, asymmetric information and market power. The main results of the project will be about pricing, quality provision and variety in frictional markets. The project will help understand the extent to which frictional markets provide firms with the appropriate incentives to deploy high-quality products in the market, or instead fail to exclude low-quality products such as ``toxic assets.''

Democratic War: Parliaments and Military Interventions in the Post-Cold War Era
Prof. dr. C. Neuhold, Maastricht University, Politieke Wetenschappen
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. N. Goet
Over the past two decades, some parliaments have gained important new powers over military interventions (e.g. France and Spain). Meanwhile, other legislatures have lost certain competencies (e.g. Hungary). Such developments raise an important question: why does the role of parliaments change with regard to military interventions? My research analyses three competing explanations of institutional change. One view emphasises an inter-institutional battle over competences, a second looks at legitimacy, and a third at path dependence. To assess these propositions, I apply a mixed-method research design consisting of a medium-n study of parliaments in 34 states from 1989 to 2012, and four in-depth case studies.

An international comparison of inequality in earnings and skill distributions
Prof. dr. H. Oosterbeek, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Algemene Economie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. S. Albrecht
This project examines the role of demand and supply of skill groups, and of technology and institutions to explain differences in earnings inequality between countries. It uses newly collected data about numeracy, literacy and problem-solving skills from over 150,000 adults in 24 countries. The first part of the project assesses the performance of the canonical demand and supply model. The second part applies a recently developed model that separates tasks from skills. The third part uses new methods to decompose earnings differences across countries and within countries over time. The final part focuses on the gender dimension.

Selecting and localizing sounds in dynamic multi-source environments
Prof. dr. A.J. van Opstal, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, Biofysica
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. G. van Bentum
Sound sources in the environment superimpose linearly to form the single acoustic wave arriving at the eardrums. From this unknown spectral-temporal mixture, the brain has to extract the behaviourally relevant source, while suppressing environmental noise from the unknown distractors (auditory scene analysis, or ASA). The ASA problem is fundamentally ill posed, and therefore in principle unsolvable for the auditory system. To identify relevant sound sources in the environment, the brain combines implicit acoustic cues with multisensory inputs, such as visual or vestibular information, but must also rely on prior knowledge and assumptions formed by experience. Localization and identification of a single sound source without distractors has been studied in great detail. However, little is known about the perception of multiple sounds in dynamic noisy environments. I will perform novel psychophysical experiments to study ASA with normal-hearing participants. The first series of experiments tests acoustic influences, such as source-onset disparities and covarying spectral modulations on sound-localization performance in unknown multi-source environments. In the second series of experiments we test non-acoustic, top-down influences on sound perception and localization. Based on my results I will develop a computational sound-localization model, incorporating Bayesian approaches, which copes with the ill-posed ASA problem.

Attribution and incomplete contracting in different cultures
Prof. dr. J.J.M. Potters, Tilburg University, Economie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. Y. Wang
In this project we explore whether and how cultural differences in causal attribution matter for economic contracting. Western people tend to understand behavior mainly in terms of the characteristics of the actor, whereas Asian people tend to have more consideration for the influence of the situation on behavior. We conjecture that these differences will matter for the way trust and trustworthiness develop in markets characterized by asymmetric quality information. We will develop formal models to derive substantive hypotheses about the importance of causal attribution in such markets, and test these hypotheses using both field data and laboratory experiments.

Whose diabetes is it anyway? Exploring the transfer of diabetes care responsibility from parents to children with type 1 diabetes
Prof. dr. F. Pouwer, Tilburg University, Center of Research on Psychology in Somatic diseases
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. J. Aalders BSc
Transferring the responsibility for diabetes care from parents to children with type 1 diabetes is often stressful and problematic for families and clinicians. We will use both a qualitative focus group study and a cross-sectional quantitative observational study to (a) establish which factors facilitate or impede a smooth transfer of diabetes care responsibilities; (b) identify the right extent of transference in different developmental stages, based on child, parent and context characteristics inspired by Belsky?s Process Model; and (c) determine whether the relation between these characteristics and health outcomes is mediated by the extent of transference of treatment responsibilities.

From Sensation to Control: Neurocognitive Mechanisms of Synesthetic Experience
Dr. R. Rouw, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Psychonomie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. D.M. van Es
The neural basis of visual experiences is among the most intensively studied questions in neuroscience. However, these mechanisms are commonly studied by presenting visual stimuli, thereby in fact mixing external (stimulus) and internal (sensation) influences on brain activation. We study synesthetes, where strong and truly perceptual experiences are present in the absence of the corresponding external stimuli, within cognitively and neurologically healthy individuals. Interestingly, they 'see' synesthetic colors when hearing letters, but do not confuse synesthetic with 'real' colors. This unusual situation is utilized, gaining insight in 1) the brain-to-sensation mechanisms, and 2) the cognitive control processes 'managing' these mechanisms.

Entrepreneurs in Residential Neighborhoods: A Study on Networks, Firm Success and Strategies
Prof. dr. V.A.J.M. Schutjens, Universiteit Utrecht, Economische Geografie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. M. de Beer BSc MSc
In the western world, urban residential neighborhoods are new production arenas for small and home-based firms. Here, living, working, and business life are strongly intertwined and firmly anchored by local economic and social network contacts. In an integrated qualitative and quantitative approach we want to test how and to what extent (change in) social networks determine success and strategies of local entrepreneurs in relation to personal and firm life course changes. Why some neighborhoods offer better conditions for endurable local social and economic networks of entrepreneurs than other districts will be tested with unique longitudinal data in 161 Dutch neighborhoods.

Heteronormativity from within: negotiating norms and pleasure during heterosexual sex encounters
Dr. R. Spronk, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Sociologie en antropologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. M. Bosman MA MSc
This study investigates how sexual practices between Dutch women and men relate to social norms on heterosex. The practices and experiences of heteronormativity are conceptualized as a set of norms acting as a guiding framework for sexual practices. Drawing on a combination of interactionist and intersectional theory, gender, social class and religion are selected as intersecting variables that constitute a heteronormative context. Innovative aspects of the study are: 1. The analysis of heteronormativity through the lens of heterosexuals; 2. A focus on the process of negotiation during sexual interactions; 3. The use of individual and joint couple interviews.

Taking approach-avoidance research a step further
Dr. J.F. Stins, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Bewegingswetenschappen
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Mw. D. Bouman MSc
Emotions are organized based on an appetitive system (priming approach) and an aversive motivational system (priming avoidance). It is unclear how these systems are coupled to the motor system, which is responsible for overt coordinated behavior. We aim to study how full body postural behaviors (e.g., stepping, leaning) are organized in response to emotional triggers and conditions. Using 4 behavioral experiments we will test how postural activities are coupled to affective states. We will analyse biomechanical markers of approach-avoidance behaviour, in conjunction with measures of neural dynamics (EEG). The research is inspired by the theory of embodied cognition and emotion.

Cognition shapes visual perception: Functional neuroanatomy of early visual processing using ultra-high field MRI
Dr. K. Uludag, Maastricht University, Cognitive Neuroscience
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. I. Marquardt
Vision seems to be the most objective sense, purely reflecting the optical properties of the environment. However, as known from psychophysiological research, our perception can be fooled by optical illusions indicating the influence of cognition on perception. The neuronal underpinning of this process is still unknown. In this proposal, the functional neuroanatomy of visual areas will be studied at an unprecedented level of detail using ultra-high field fMRI. In particular, the subcortical visual brain areas will be investigated, which have been incorrectly but widely assumed to be just relay stations for passing visual information to the cortex for further processing.

A Bayesian Approach to Mental Health Assessment in Psychiatric Detention Centers
Prof. dr. E.J.M. Wagenmakers, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Psychologie
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. R. Selker BSc
This proposal outlines a Bayesian procedure to assess the mental health of patients who have been involuntarily committed to a psychiatric detention center. Based on Cultural Consensus Theory, the Bayesian procedure coherently combines information from different sources and takes into account differences and similarities between both staff members and patients. The procedure allows users to track progress of individual patients, quantify their risk of recidivism, and rigorously assess the effectiveness of treatments. Forensic expertise and data banks are available through collaboration with the Mesdag clinic. State-of-the-art statistical procedures contribute towards a more transparent and reliable system of mental health assessment.

With a little help from my friends: Integrating social network arguments in recommender systems to provide tailored, trustworthy advice in the energy domain
Dr. ir. M.C. Willemsen, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Human-Technology Interaction
Uitvoerend onderzoeker: Dhr. A.D. Starke BSc
In today’s high information density world, recommender systems have been shown to be able to aid individual sense- and decision-making. However, computer scientists developing recommender systems tend to optimize these systems based on computational rather than user-oriented arguments. Recent research has shown that recommender systems can be enhanced based on insights from psychology and social network theory, but it is still unclear which kinds of elements to include, and why. This proposal aims to fill that gap, and considers how such improved recommender systems can support energy conservation decisions by providing tailored suggestions and feedback instead of descriptive "one-size-fits-all solutions".

Bron: NWO



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