Mathematics clusters appraised as ‘Excellent’: new call to be announced

19 September 2019

The four mathematics clusters DIAMANT, GQT, NDNS+ and STAR were recently assessed on behalf of the Dutch Research Council (NWO). All four clusters were accorded an ‘Excellent’ qualification. Following this positive evaluation, the Dutch Research Council has developed a call, aimed at all researchers in the four clusters, inviting applications for PhD positions.

The four mathematics clusters DIAMANT, GQT, NDNS+ and STAR were recently assessed on behalf of the Dutch Research Council (NWO). All four clusters were accorded an ‘Excellent’ qualification. Following this positive evaluation, the Dutch Research Council has developed a call, aimed at all researchers in the four clusters, inviting applications for PhD positions.

The four mathematics clusters, which are unique in the world, are a successful Dutch concept. The first clusters were set up in 2005 to prevent the fragmentation of research and education. The clusters bring critical mass and focus to maths research and education in those areas in which the Netherlands perform best. This concentration of strengths has allowed Dutch maths to hold its own at an international level. The maths field has been divided into four clusters: DIAMANT (Discrete, Interactive and Algorithmic Mathematics, Algebra and Number Theory), GQT (Geometry and Quantum Theory), NDNS+ (Nonlinear Dynamics in Natural Systems), and STAR (Stochastics - Theoretical and Applied Research).

In late 2018 the mathematics clusters were evaluated on behalf of the Dutch Research Council by an international scientific evaluation committee led by Professor R. Tijdeman. To this end, all four clusters drew up a self-evaluation report and a research road map, a strategic document describing the cluster’s long-term plans (Mathematics cluster self - evaluation and conclusions evaluation). The evaluation committee concluded that all four mathematics clusters deserved an ‘Excellent’ qualification, and that together they formed a Dutch maths research infrastructure which actively involved mathematicians in an efficient and effective way. One of the committee’s recommendations emerging from this evaluation was to develop a call for all members of the four clusters through which applications could be made for PhD positions. 

Following this recommendation, the Dutch Research Council has developed a call for applications on behalf of innovative and/or high-risk scientific research concerning research questions of high quality and urgency within the four maths clusters. The proposed research field must lie within one or more of the themes defined in the 2019–2029 research road maps of the DIAMANT, GQT, NDNS+ and STAR clusters. It must also lie within one or more of the seven mathematics focus areas described in the sector plan. The call, with an overall budget of €4 million, will be published on the Dutch Research Council website in early October. The application deadline for submission of the obligatory pre-notification is 7 January 2020.

More information on the four mathematics clusters:

    DIAMANT
    GQT
    NDNS+
    STAR

More information on the seven mathematics focus areas described in the sector plan  (‘Sectorbeeld beta wetenschappen’, from page 49).

Source: NWO