Hestia – Impulse for Refugees in Science

Hestia – Impulse for Refugees in Science

NWO launched in 2018 in consultation with KNAW, the Young Academy and the Foundation for Refugee Students (UAF) a pilot call to fund research appointments for academics residing in the Netherlands as refugees and wishing to build or continue an academic career here. Due to the apparent need for such funding, the pilot call has been extended by two years. Funding rounds will also take place in 2019 and 2020.

With this short-term funding, refugee academics can join current research projects funded by NWO or ZonMw and build up a network. They can share knowledge and expertise, become familiar with the Dutch science system and restart their interrupted career or line of research. At the same time these academics enrich Dutch science with their expertise.


In recent years, there has been growing attention in the Netherlands and its neighbouring countries for researchers who have had to flee their home country due to war or other threatening situations. When they try to continue their academic careers in the countries where they find a safe home, they often come up against obstacles such as language barriers, different working cultures or limited opportunities to build up a network. Valuable knowledge and expertise from this group of researchers could therefore be lost, while these researchers have the potential to enrich both science and society.

NWO is committed to a strong science system in the Netherlands and subscribes to the importance of a diverse, inclusive and accessible scientific system.

Funding instrument for this programme

All grants for Hestia Impulse