Young MVI: a fresh perspective
To assure that younger generations of NWO-MVI researchers are actively engaged in the MVI program Young MVI was installed, a group of young researchers from ongoing or recently finished MVI projects. President Wouter Boon – assistant professor at Utrecht University – explains the why and what of Young MVI.
How did Young MVI come about?
‘It was initiated by the NWO-MVI Board. The members – who are senior researchers with ample experience in the field – wanted to ensure that younger generations of researchers would be actively involved in the MVI program. Young MVI currently consists of five postdocs and assistant professors who form a committee of young scholars that, among other things, advises the Board on ongoing business. We have a vacancy for a young researcher with a background in the technical sciences and a strong affinity with the MVI approach, which we want to fill during the upcoming academic year.’
What does Young MVI do?
‘One of the roles of Young MVI is to advise the Board on issues concerning, for example, calls for proposals and the daily practice of MVI research. One of the topics we are actively engaged in together with the Board, is the matter of valorisation panels. Every MVI project has such a panel that involves the relevant stakeholders in the project. We want to share best practices on how to deal with public and private parties in such panels, and how to keep these parties engaged.
Secondly, members of Young MVI are involved in general NWO-MVI activities and act as ambassadors for the MVI approach. We often play an active role in meetings such as the MVI conference at the beginning of this year, and we have provided feedback on the MVI web portal before it was launched (www.nwo-mvi.nl). Importantly, we also promote the MVI approach with broader audiences. We join dedicated meetings (for example, with Young Management – the younger department of VNO-NCW that connects entrepreneurs, directors and managers under the age of 40) to inform representatives of companies and other organisations about why they should engage in MVI projects, and how they could benefit from the approach.
Furthermore, we are trying to find ways to connect young MVI researchers, for example through networking meetings.’
Why should the younger generation be represented so explicitly?
‘As relatively young researchers we have a different and fresh perspective on things. Furthermore, often more senior researchers supervise an MVI project, but a younger generation of researchers carries out the largest part of the actual research. It is therefore important to also involve this generation in the NWO-MVI program and give them a voice.’
Do you have a message for your colleagues in the field?
‘Contact the members of Young MVI if you have any suggestions about how to further develop the MVI approach, or if you have any specific ideas for meetings, matchmakings between scientists and companies or societal organisations, and so on. Do not hesitate to send us or the MVI office (firstname.lastname@example.org) an e-mail!’
Young MVI currently consists of:
dr. Koen Beumer, Utrecht University
dr. Wouter Boon, Utrecht University (president)
dr. Eline Bunnik, Erasmus Medical Center
dr. Johanna Höffken, Eindhoven University of Technology
dr. Lotte Krabbenborg, Radboud University