Vision for Science 2025
On November 25, 2014, the Dutch Cabinet sent its 'Vision for Science 2025, choices for the future' to Parliament. The vision provides an approach for Dutch science to continue to play its part at the international forefront of scientific research.
In ‘2025 Vision on Science choices for the future’, the Dutch Cabinet states that Dutch science has a healthy basis and that the Netherlands can be proud of its science and scientists. NWO shares the Cabinets vision and emphasises the importance of opportunities for curiosity-driven and non-programmed research for a strong science sector. NWO agrees with the Cabinet that more collaboration and connection are needed to stay at the scientific top and to further increase the contribution to society. NWO has been requested to make a significant contribution to realising the ambitions that emerge from the science vision. NWO will wholeheartedly commit itself to realising these new tasks in addition to its current task of encouraging quality and innovation in science.
National Science Agenda
In the Vision on scienc the Cabinet has announced a National Science Agenda that will connect the various agendas that have been diverging up until now. The National Science Agenda will respond to the challenges that offer the Netherlands important societal as well as scientific opportunities and will provide a source of inspiration for new research programming throughout the Netherlands. The knowledge coalition which consists of VSNU, Vereniging van Hogescholen, KNAW, TNO and research institutes were applied research, VNO-NCW, MKB Nederland and NWO, will take the initiative of drawing up the National Science Agenda under the leadership of an independent chairperson. An extra effort from NWO will be the coordination of this process by leading the secretariat. As preparation for such a national agenda, NWO has started to identify promising challenges for science that arise from social and economic challenges.
Permanent committee for large-scale research infrastructure
State-of-the-art facilities are becoming increasingly important for groundbreaking research and make the Netherlands attractive for scientific talent. NWO aims for more national coordination and will contribute to a national strategy for large to very large research facilities. To this end, a permanent committee will be set up at NWO with the assignment of developing a national strategy for investments in large-scale research infrastructure. Funding will be made available within the context of this national strategy. The NWO institutes will algin their research agenda with the National Research Agenda and the National Strategy for large scale research infrastructure.
Maintaining the connection with scientific research
The important role of NWO in the new policy brings with it a strengthened strategic positioning that requires the necessary flexibility and decisiveness from NWO. Realising this task well will require changes to NWO's administrative structure and how it is set up as an organisation. These changes will be implemented with the utmost care and caution and for NWO an absolute condition in this process is that the connection with researchers remains. Only then can continuity be safeguarded and can we further build upon the success was achieved by Dutch science.