An Integrated Approach to the Scientific Study and Conservation of Art (seed money proposal)

Interdisciplinary teams consisting of senior researchers of at least one university and one museum can apply for funding for research projects focused on the potential of data science for the research agenda of NICAS.


NICAS aims to bring about a new and lasting framework integrating the disciplines of art history, conservation and science. Bringing these disciplines together will make it possible to tackle existing research problems in novel ways

For this edition of the call, a key element is the potential of data science for the research agenda of NICAS. One of the biggest challenges in interpreting and safeguarding cultural heritage is obtaining the necessary and correct insights from large scale and highly diverse data. Cultural heritage research generates large quantities of data that are difficult to match and compare. This means that their potential value is not fully utilised. In addition, this type of research deals with data that are difficult to substantiate, but that nonetheless play an important role in the interpretation of cultural heritage and decision making processes in conservation issues.

Who can apply

Proposals can be submitted by interdisciplinary teams consisting of senior researchers of different research disciplines and one or more museums.

Applications can be submitted by full, assistant and associate professors and other researchers with a comparable appointment, as main applicant, if they:

  • possess a PhD or equivalent qualification;
  • hold an appointment at a Dutch university or a research institute recognised by NWO;
  • are employed for at least the duration of the application process and the project for which the funding is requested.

In case a museum/gallery or conservation institute in the Netherlands has a regular research activity at academic level in conservation science, senior researchers may be eligible as main applicant. In this case the co-applicant needs to be from a university.

What to apply for

The maximum grant for seed money proposals that can be applied for is k€  25.

Funding can be applied for contribution to material and equipment costs that will allow the idea to be developed further, including travel expenses and accomodation costs for participating researchers and experts.

When to apply

  • The deadline for application via ISAAC was July 6, 2017, 14:00 hours CE(S)T



Each proposal will be evaluated on four main criteria:

  • scientific quality of the proposal (45%)
  • quality of the research team (20%)
  • relevance to NICAS (20%)
  • project potential (15%)

More information on the criteria can be found in the call for proposals attached to this page.


A panel of independent (inter)national experts will discuss and rank the seed money proposals during a meeting. Based on the opinion and ranking of the review panel, the Board of NICAS prepares a final funding advice. The Board of NWO Physical Sciences makes the final funding decision.

More information on the procedure can be found in the call for proposals attached to this page.

More information

Netherlands Institute for Conservation, Art and Science:




Closed for application


6 July 2017 14:00

Grant type



1.5 million euro

Science area

Exact and Natural Sciences Social Sciences and Humanities


Netherlands Institute for Conservation, Art and Science


Thematic research and public -private partnership (2015-2018)




Mw. drs. E.T. Vleugel MSc Mw. drs. E.T. Vleugel MSc +31 (0)70 349 4064