Each year, Erasmus University Rotterdam offers fellowships to young, promising EUR researchers who have obtained their doctorates. These EUR Fellowships last 2 years and are awarded to stimulate the researchers to pursue an academic career.
EUR Fellowships in 2018
Dr N. A. M. E. (Nadine) van der Beek
Erasmus MC, Department of Neurology
An improved, personalised treatment for Pompe disease
Pompe disease is a serious hereditary muscular disease for which enzyme replacement therapy has been available as a treatment option since 2006. This has considerably improved patients’ prospects. However, some patients respond better to the treatment than others. Dr Nadine van der Beek is researching the inter-individual differences in treatment response as well as mechanisms that influence enzyme therapy absorption in the tissues. A better understanding of the underlying problems will allow us to improve the therapy and tailor it more effectively to the needs of the individual patient.
Dr P. P. L. (Pauwke) Berkers
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication
Hearing diversities: how music can bring people together
Music is said to bring people together. But is this really the case? Dr Pauwke Berkers is examining to which extent music serves as a bridge between majorities and immigrant ethnic minorities in two European cities: Rotterdam and Bristol. How do audiences ‘hear’ diversity when they listen to music, play it or visit concerts? Constructing musical living rooms, he will invite diverse participants to bring their music with them. By listening, they share their experiences, memories, and feelings.
Do they hear the other through music?
Dr K. (Kimberley) Breevaart
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences
How do you react when your leader treats you badly?
What would you do when your leader has an anger outburst or publicly ridicules you? And would you respond differently if you knew that he or she is in a bad mood because of trouble at home or a traffic jam on the way to work? In her project, dr Kimberley Breevaart is examining how employees react to abuses of power by their leaders and whether these reactions help to reduce or, in contrast, further increase these abuses.
Dr S. R. J. M. (Samira) van Bohemen
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences
Revealing sexual risk and pleasure at white middle-class heterosexual parties
In many cases, research into sexuality centres almost exclusively on risks, with a strong focus on ethnic minorities, people with a lower level of education and non-heterosexual adolescents. Young people from the white, heterosexual middle-class are only very rarely a subject of study and are implicitly adopted as the standard and personification of sexual success. Nevertheless, the public debate sparked off by #metoo has shown that this group has to deal with sexual problems of its own. In her project, dr Samira van Bohemen focuses on this underexposed majority. She is researching how young party-goers handle the balance between sexual risk and pleasure.
Dr T. J. (Tjakko) van Ham
Erasmus MC, Department of Clinical Genetics
Brain-building blood cells
Special immune cells called microglia are essential for development and maintenance of our brain. They are involved in diseases like Alzheimer’s, but it is still unclear what they normally do and how they contribute to a healthy brain. In this project, dr Tjakko van Ham will investigate how a lack of microglia causes brain disease in patients, and how to promote microglia activity for a healthy brain. He will be researching microglia’s role in the brain development of transparent zebrafish and in human brain diseases.
Dr E. (Elena) Kantorowicz-Rezncichenko
Erasmus School of Law
Don’t mess with my mind: behavioural insights in policy making
Policy-makers around the world are increasingly using findings from behavioural sciences about human decision-making to improve regulations. However, those methods are criticised for being covert and influencing people’s behaviour without their awareness. Dr Elena Kantorowicz-Rezncichenko will investigate whether behaviourally informed policies (‘nudges’ in particular) can be made transparent and at the same time effective. Using experimental methods, she will be paying specific attention to the impact of transparency on the effectiveness of different ‘nudges’.
Dr ir. P. (Pieter) Kruizinga
Erasmus MC, Department of Neuroscience
Visualising the brain with echography
As you read this text, a range of blood flows in your brain ensure that your language centres are supplied with sufficient oxygen to understand these words. Dr ir. Pieter Kruizinga’s research focuses on how these changes in blood flows can be visualised. He wants to use these visualisations to gain a better understanding of the intriguing processes that take place in our brain. Ultimately, he hopes to develop this technology to the point where we can look straight through the skull and learn new things about our brain and conditions like brain tumours and dementia.
Dr C. (Chen) Li
Erasmus School of Economics
How is trust lost and how to find it back?
This project adopts the behavioural economics approach to identify and reduce decision biases that can undermine the maintenance of trust in a society. Trust is an important social lubricant. As desirable as it is, trusting others involves the uncertainty of possible betrayal – making it a difficult decision. Dr Chen Li analyses how individuals’ biases towards the uncertainties that underlie trust decisions affect the long-term maintenance of trust in a society. Her research enhances trust maintenance by proposing and evaluating interventions that can reduce these biases.
Dr E. S. (Elena) Martens-Uzunova
Erasmus MC, Department of Urology
CARIBEAn – the Cancer Ribosomes Epitranscriptomic Atlas
As a scientist, dr Elena Martens-Uzunova believes that the better understanding of the processes that take place in healthy cells is prerequisite to the more effective detection and treatment of cancer. Her current research is focused on the protein factories of the cell, called ribosomes. She is investigating the differences between normal and cancer ribosomes and how such changes affect tumour growth and aggressiveness. The answer of these questions can be used to develop better markers and new therapeutics for prostate cancer and other malignancies.
Dr R. L. (Ryan) Muetzel
Erasmus MC, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry/Psychology
Separating the signals: disentangling the effects of psychopathology on brain development
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) offers an unprecedented window into the developing brain, providing insight into the emergence of mental illness in children. Dr Ryan Muetzel will track deviations in neurodevelopment over time in one of the world’s largest paediatric imaging cohorts, the Generation R Study. Crucially, longitudinal structural and functional MRI will be used with machine learning to study the neural correlates of psychiatric symptoms as well as how living with mental illness can have a negative, ‘downstream’ impact on the brain.