Anahita Jamshidnejad

In dangerous tragic situations, such as earthquakes, floods, collapse of buildings, wars, and terrorist attacks, search-and-rescue robots can be used as a substitute for human rescuers. These robots should interact and their actions should be controlled efficiently to achieve the ultimate objectives of the search-and-rescue mission (i.e., to find, rescue, and treat the victims and to remove the remaining risk factors from the area) within a crucial time span that is determined by multiple factors (e.g., estimated number of victims, risk of a follow-up explosion, etc.). 
The novel approaches in my proposed research can make efficient predictive control approaches applicable in real time to teams of robots with multiple objectives that should be obtained within a limited time span (e.g., to save the trapped people in a collapsed building within 72 h from the time the disaster occurs, and to remove the explosive material from the building before it explodes), and in a search-and-rescue mission that covers a large area. This project (1 December 2017 – 1 December 2018) will be hosted by ETH Zurich, Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control, Zurich, Switzerland.


Catalina Goanta

The rise of disruptive technologies such as e-commerce, the platform economy, artificial intelligence or blockchain pushes the boundaries of the law. My research seeks to understand how private law reacts to innovation. In doing so, I turn to innovative jurisdictions (California and Switzerland), to map regulatory responses to technological disruptions and discuss resulting regulation patterns. After obtaining my PhD in 2016, I became Assistant Professor in Private Law (Maastricht University). As a Niels Stensen fellow, I am delighted to visit, as of February 2018, the Institute for Work and Employment Research (University of St. Gallen), and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society (Harvard University).


Ingrid de Zwarte

Throughout history, violent conflict and famine have been inextricably linked. This research project investigates the complex ways in which hunger has been deployed as a weapon in modern violent conflict from World War I up until the present. The underpinning objectives of my project are twofold: to shift the focus from studying famine as a consequence of conflict to investigating famine as a tool in modern violent conflict, and to include the politics of famine relief as an explanatory variable in the analysis. The project will be hosted by the History Faculty at the University of Oxford, starting September 2018.


Marc Lammers

In our society and in my daily profession as an ENT surgeon, we are faced with the increasing debilities associated with hearing impairment. Although for most patients speech perception can be restored with cochlear implants, there is considerable room for improvement. Stem cell based therapies hold the potential to restore damaged inner ear structures, but directing functional cells to the end organ remains difficult. The Niels Stensen Fellowship allows me to work in the stem cell laboratory of the department of Otolaryngology of the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, and study a unique method to target stem cells, labeled with magnetic nanoparticles towards the inner ear.


Nathalie Koster

The influx of immigrants in Europe, particularly from non-western countries, has sparked heated public and political debates. Many of these debates have focused on ethnic minority immigrants’ involvement in committing crime. Meanwhile, immigrants’ perceptions of local police in European countries have largely been ignored so far. Their views, however, may provide important implications for policing in culturally diverse societies, as the police is largely dependent on citizen cooperation to effectively fight crime. With this fellowship, I hope to gain more insight into the nature of police-ethnic minority immigrant relationships and how these can be improved. The research will be carried out in London at the UCL Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science, starting September 2018.


Polina Putrik

Health inequalities exist even in wealthy countries with universal access to care, and health literacy has been pointed out as an important common modifiable pathway between social deprivation and health in these countries. Recently, advances in measuring and addressing low health literacy have been made by researchers at Deakin and Monash Universities (Melbourne, Australia). During my stay in Australia between February and December 2018, I will learn to apply these methods in order to bring them to the rheumatology clinics in the Netherlands. I am keep on shifting research in this field from descriptive towards intervention and action research.  


Wouter Kouw

Artificially intelligent systems are core components of smartphones, robots and self-driving cars. These systems can learn to perform tasks, but need data for training. Unfortunately, data is often biased, i.e. misrepresents the general population, which means that a car trained with data from Dutch traffic will crash when it leaves the country. Fortunately, in recent years, there has been extensive research into systems that can adapt to changes in data distributions. With this Fellowship, I will study adaptive systems from a sequential perspective. From June 2018 to March 2019, the University of Copenhagen in Denmark will be hosting my research.