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Applied and Engineering Sciences (AES)

NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences (AES) is committed to promoting technical scientific research that yields applications and impact for people and society. For the period 2019-2022, AES focuses on the following three points: a strengthened applied engineering sciences foundation, efficient innovation chains and visible societal impact.

The NWO domain AES brings together technical scientists and users for excellent technical-scientific research. By participating in application-oriented projects via NWO Domain AES, investors can play a key role in the development of valuable technical innovation. Companies and other organisations are given the opportunity to invest in research that connects with their own research wishes.

  • Strategy

    Besides funding research, NWO also wants to fulfil a connecting role. NWO has defined five ambitions to realise its objectives, which are also leading for the vision and objectives of NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences (AES) for the period 2019-2022. View the summary of the vision document "Technology for People and Society".

    Solving societal issues

    The NWO Domain AES carries out its activities in an increasingly dynamic and complex arena. Politics, industry and society are asking science to help solve societal issues. Research in the applied and engineering sciences and the application of its outcomes play a crucial role in that. Yet at the same time, the vitality of the applied and engineering sciences field is under pressure.

    Mission and objectives AES

    The mission of NWO Domain AES is a response to this context: facilitating applied and engineering sciences research that yields applications and impact for people and society.
    The domain will give shape to this AES vision by focussing on the following three objectives for the period 2019-2022:

    1. a strengthened applied engineering sciences foundation
    2. efficient innovation chains
    3. visible societal impact.

    How to realise the objectives?

    The steps that NWO Domain AES will take towards realising these objectives fall within the five NWO ambitions.

    • NWO ambition Nexus - connecting agendas, science and society
    • NWO ambition People - perspective for researchers
    • NWO ambition Research - collaboration for excellence and innovation
    • NWO ambition Infrastructure - accessible and sustainable scientific infrastructure
    • NWO ambition Knowledge transfer - effective use of knowledge through co-design and co-creation
    Nexus  - connecting agendas, science and society

    Actions NWO Domain AES

    • encouraging and supporting the organisation of the applied and engineering sciences field.
    • making choices for societal themes and key technologies, whereby the shaping of agendas and the harmonisation of programmes will be facilitated in consultation with partners in the innovation chains.
    • collecting and making accessible policy-related information from projects of NWO Domain AES so that trends in technology and science areas can be signalled and used for developments in the top sectors and societal challenges.
    • organising the NWO Innovation Festival Teknowlogy, with an overview of technological innovations from all NWO programmes.

    NWO ambiton Nexus 

    People - perspective for researchers

    Actions NWO Domain AES

    • giving researchers the opportunity to develop their own line of research via the NWO Talent Scheme programme.
    • increasing the diversity of researchers by deploying additional funding in the Talent Scheme programme for the participation of women and researchers with an ethnic background.
    • awarding prizes to researchers and research teams in various phases of their career/development.
    • supporting researchers in their development by making scientific knowledge applicable.

    NWO ambiton People

    Research – collaboration for excellence and innovation

    Actions NWO Domain AES

    • increasing the structural budget for the Open Technology Programme by 20% to 26 million euros per year.
    • using indirect government funding from the Sectorplan Techniek (Sector Plan Technology) for exploratory applied and engineering sciences research.
    • contributing to the design of thematic calls in the Dutch National Research Agenda and innovation policy in the new top sectors approach driven by mission and key technology.
    • reducing the application pressure in AES funding instruments.
    • facilitating the involvement of SMEs in research programmes and projects.
    NWO ambition Research

    Infrastructure - accessible and sustainable scientific infrastructure

    Actions NWO Domain AES

    • facilitating the accessibility and opportunities for the applied and engineering sciences in national and international instruments for large scientific infrastructure.
    • including budget for infrastructure in all funding instruments.

    NWO ambition Infrastructure 

    Knowledge transfer - effective use of knowledge through co-design and co-creation

    Actions NWO Domain AES

    • facilitating societal impact by strengthening the role of user committees in research projects.
    • including the concept of user committees in thematic programmes in the Dutch National Research Agenda and top sectors.
    • collaborating with partners (including 4TU, TO2, government ministries) during the further development of the start-up ecosystem in the Netherlands.
    • offering modules in existing and new funding instruments for realising the programmes Industrial Doctorates and Societal Doctorates.
    • including the module proof-of-concept grant and funding instruments to allow researchers to explore the societal potential of research.
    • monitoring the societal impact of research and making the results of this impact visible.

    NWO ambition Knowledge transfer

  • Board / organisation

    The Board of NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences (AES) is responsible for developing the policy. The Domain Board takes decisions about the awarding of funds.

    The members of the AES Domain Board are:

    • prof. dr. ir. M.P.C. (Margot) Weijnen (Delft University of Technology), president, also member of the Executive Board
    • dr. M.J. (Margrethe) Jonkman (FrieslandCampina), vice-president
    • prof. dr. W.J. (Wiro) Niessen (Erasmus MC, Delft University of Technology)
    • ir. C.M. (Karin) Sluis (Witteveen+Bos)
    • B. (Bert) Kip (Brightlands Chemelot Campus)
    • dhr. L. (Lukas) Roffel (Thales Nederland)

    The office of the AES Domain realises the established policy and prepares new policy to support the Domain Board. The office is the first point of contact for researchers and connects the scientific field with NWO. Its staff members deal with funding applications, manage programmes, encourage valorisation at project and programme level and provides office support for the public-private innovation programmes. The acting director of the AES office is Leon Gielgens.

    NWO Domain AES receives funding from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW), the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK), the business community and various other organisations to carry out its mission.

    NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences has existed since 1 January 2017 and was formed from the Technology Foundation STW.

  • Selection committee/jury

    Interested in joining a selection committee/jury for AES (TTW)?

    NWO is always on the lookout for enthusiastic medior and senior researchers interested in joining a selection committee and juries. These committees and juries are essential to the proper, careful assessment of applications. At the bottom of this page, you can indicate your availability for committee/jury work for the NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences (AES/TTW).

    What are the benefits?
    • insight into working methods and procedures at NWO;
    • learning how to write a successful application;
    • early knowledge of the latest developments in applied and engineering sciences;
    • being able to contribute to the selection of proposals;
    • opportunities to expand your own network.
    What does a selection committee do?

    A selection committee assesses the quality of research applications, with the help of external expert advice and a possible interview with the applicant. The committee then prioritises these applications. On the basis of this prioritisation the competent body then decides which applicants will receive funding.

    What does a jury do?

    A jury assesses the quality of research applications with the help of external expert advice. Prioritisation is based on the average assessment of all members of the jury. The members of the jury do not meet or deliberate. On the basis of the prioritisation, the competent body decides which applicants will receive funding.

    Who is eligible for committee membership?

    Membership in a selection committee is open to medior and senior researchers: that is to say, post-doctoral researchers with least a few years’ additional experience (as professor, associate professor or assistant professor). People with a similar profile working in industry or at research institutes are also welcome at AES (TTW). A broad view of applied and/or technical scientific research is desirable. When appointing a selection committee, care shall be taken to ensure that its members represent a wide variety of disciplines, diversities, universities and degrees of seniority. Knowledge of the Dutch language is not required.

    Is there financial compensation for committee work?

    NWO always refunds travel costs and necessary accommodation costs for committee members. In certain cases NWO also offers committee members compensation for the time devoted to selection meetings, so-called vacatiegeld (attendance fee).Because jury members do not meet, there is no compensation available for jury work.

    More information

    If you are interested and motivated to take part in a selection committee or jury, please fill in this application form. The applications received will be taken into consideration in the composition of committees and juries. If you are proposed for a committee/jury, we will contact you. For more information please contact Sylvia Warmolts at or on +31-(0)30-6001363.

  • Industry and partners

    NWO gives companies and other organisations the opportunity to invest in research that connects with their own research wishes. By participating in scientific projects via NWO Domain AES, investors can play a key role in the development of valuable innovation.


    Advantages of collaborating with NWO

    • We translate your research needs into a sharp research question
    • We provide tailored solutions in collaborations between companies and researchers
    • We organise selection of the best research proposals
    • We provide access to strong networks of researchers and investors
    • We stimulate entrepreneurship arising from knowledge institutions
    • We facilitate the utilisation of scientific knowledge

    Tailored solutions

    NWO has 35 years of experience in establishing and guiding collaborations between companies and academic researchers. Based on this experience we offer many possibilities for collaboration. In addition, we offer tailored solutions for setting up large-scale, application-oriented research programmes between academic researchers and partners.


    Innovative starters

    NWO also supports entrepreneurship arising from universities, universities of applied sciences and other knowledge institutions. Researchers who would like to set up a business based on knowledge from scientific research can apply for various types of funding. For this group of researchers, NWO offers the Take-off and Demonstrator funding programmes.


Leon Gielgens

Leon Gielgens
Acting director

NWO Domain
NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences

Portret van Barbara van de Plassche

Barbara van de Plassche
Executive Secretary/Office Manager

030-6001 203

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NWO Domain
NWO Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences (NWO Domain AES)