Naar een praktische Safe-by-Design aanpak voor chemische producten en processen

Towards a practical Safe-by-Design approach for chemical products and processes (NWA)

This thematic programme of the Dutch Research Agenda (NWA) is aimed at the development and implementation of a practical Safe-by-Design approach for the design of chemical substances, materials, products and processes.

  • Aim and objectives

    Safe-by-Design is an iterative, interactive, interdisciplinary design process in which health and safety are framed as central values from an early stage of development and throughout the design process, so that the resulting products and processes are safer for people and the environment. Mutual learning is central to this programme: The early consideration of health and environmental effects not only requires fundamental chemical and toxicological knowledge, but also practical knowledge of production processes, the future use of the substances and processes and their effects during the life cycle. The intended impact of this research program goes beyond just joint learning between consortium partners – it is also about sharing what has been learned in such a way that other developers and researchers are helped along the way.

  • Budget and duration

    This Call for proposals was launched in the summer of 2021. A budget of € 3,225,000 spread over two phases is available for this call. An amount of € 2,700,000 is available for Phase 1. From this budget, research projects with a maximum size of € 900,000 each can be awarded funding. Research projects awarded funding in Phase 1 have a minimum duration of 3 years and a maximum duration of 4 years. In Phase 2, one umbrella project with a maximum size of € 525,000 can be awarded funding. The umbrella project has a duration of 4 years.

  • Partners

    The initiators of this call for proposals are the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment.

  • Committees

    NWA thematic programmes have two committees: a supervisory committee and an assessment committee.

    Supervisory committee

    An advising supervisory committee is set up for each NWA thematic programme. This committee is responsible for the supervision of the programme as a whole and its projects. It monitors the potential synergy between the various projects, their progress and the results achieved in relation to knowledge utilisation. The supervisory committee can also play a role in stimulating productive interactions between consortia and policy practice.

    The participating government authorities are represented in the supervisory committee, in addition to a delegation from the research and societal partners. Important stakeholders can also participate in the supervisory committee, for instance because they represent the field of expertise and can stimulate knowledge exchange and sharing with practitioners.

    Assessment Committee

    An independent committee assesses the pre-proposals and the full proposals. In accordance with the NWA approach, the assessment committee has a broad composition. This means that not only scientists but also representatives from the entire knowledge chain and societal stakeholders can become a member of the assessment committee. The participating government authorities are not represented in the assessment committee, but are allowed to be present as observers during meetings.

  • NWA routes Circular economy and Materials - Made in Holland

    This Call for proposals fits within the NWA Routes Circular economy and resource efficiency: sustainable circular impact and Materials - Made in Holland. Within these routes, the research aims to contribute to the development of a practical Safe-by-Design approach through mutual learning between the research projects awarded funding.

    Both the Dutch government and the European Union are increasing their focus on Safe-by-Design. Examples can be found on and…


Leon Klomp - NWA

Leon Klomp - NWA
Program secretary

00316 23 20 12 07

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NWO Domain
Social Sciences and Humanties