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Four young ethnic minority researchers from the University of Amsterdam (UvA) have been awarded a Mosaic grant from The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) to conduct their doctoral research.

Four young ethnic minority researchers from the University of Amsterdam (UvA) have been awarded a Mosaic grant from The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) to conduct their doctoral research. Each laureate will receive 200,000 Euros to complete their doctoral thesis over a four-year period.

The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) developed the Mosaic programme to enable a larger number of ethnic minority graduates to advance in science. The NWO hopes these successful candidates will remain active in the Dutch scientific community over the long term, thus serving as an example to others.

A total of 210 students and graduates responded to the invitation to submit research topics. The best 41 candidates were invited to attend NWO workshops, further elaborate their ideas and present them to an expert assessment committee. Twenty of these candidates were awarded a Mosaic grant. Many of the winning candidates have already won previous awards or contributed to academic publications over the course of their studies. Some have also combined multiple study programmes.

An overview of the UvA laureates:

P. (Pumin) Kommattam, Psychology

Interpreting emotions. The intercultural recognition and interpretation of emotions
Recognising and accurately interpreting emotions is a crucial element of everyday social interaction, especially in potentially dangerous situations. Pumin Kommattam is researching whether non-immigrant Dutch citizens incorrectly interpret the emotions of ethnic minority groups.

A. (Aleksandra) Pudliszak, Centre for Latin American Research and Documentation (CEDLA)

Argentine national identity
Argentines are proud of the fact that their country is the most European of all Latin American nations. Aleksandra Pudliszak aims to shed new light on Argentina’s national identity and present-day social structure by analysing new historical materials and the migratory history of a group that has never been studied before.

D. (Dilek) Yamali, Philosophy

Kant and Wittgenstein on ethics: reassessing the normative bases for ethical and legal responsibility
Dilek Yamali is applying the ethical principles developed by Kant and Wittgenstein to study ethical and legal responsibility rooted in the 'ought implies can' principle, and its limitations. According to this principle, we can only be held responsible for actions we could potentially influence.

N. (Nawal) Bahia el Idrissi, Medicine (AMC-UvA)

The role of the immune system in the progression of ALS
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease. The complement system, part of the innate immune system, can cause nerve damage. Activation of the complement system affects the spinal cord of ALS patients, but its exact role is still unclear. Nawal Bahia el Idrissi aims to study the role of this system in the progression of ALS.