Jarry Porsius and Ruth Peters off to foreign top institutes thanks to Rubicon

2 APH researcher Ruth Peters and former APH researcher  Jarry Porsius have been granted a NWO Rubicon. Rubicon aims to encourage talented researchers at Dutch universities and research institutes run by KNAW and NWO to dedicate themselves to a career in postdoctoral research.

With the grant he 2 researchers will research the following:

The power of the placebo 

Dr J.T. (Jarry) Porsius (m), VUmc Amsterdam -> USA, Harvard Medical School, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, 14 months

The faith in a treatment partly determines the outcome. But when do we believe that a treatment is working well? In this research, the underlying principles will be examined. This will enable an optimal deployment of placebo effects in healthcare.

A new theory to address health-related stigmata

Dr R.M.H. (Ruth) Peters (f), VU University Amsterdam -> USA, Harvard University, Department of Social Medicine and Global Health, 18 months

People with various illnesses, such as a mental illness, leprosy or HIV/AIDS, are regularly discriminated against or excluded. A lot is known about stigmatisation, but we know little about how to reduce it. This research will focus on the development of a stigma reduction theory.

Facts and figures

Besides APH researcher Ruth Peters and former APH researcher Jarry Porsius 20 other young research talents received a Rubicon grant from NWO. A total of 78 researchers submitted a proposal Rubicon, of which 45 men and 33 women. The overall award rate was 28%. The award rate was 20% for men and 39% for women. Twelve laureates are going to the United States, four to the United Kingdom, two to Germany, one to Australia, one to Canada, one to France and one to Belgium. For many researchers, experience abroad is an important step in their career.

In the list of awards, a brief description of the research proposals awarded funding is provided, as are several facts and figures for this funding round.


With a Rubicon grant researchers can conduct research for a period up to 24 months at a foreign research institute. The size of the grant depends on the destination chosen and the length of stay. NWO is able to fund around 60 young researchers through Rubicon every year (for a total sum of 7 million euros, spread over three rounds). The Rubicon programme is named after the river Julius Caesar crossed after his series of victories, which ultimately led to his declaration ‘veni, vidi, vici’. NWO chose the name Rubicon in 2005 for its individual grant programme aimed at retaining talented researchers, who have recently gained their PhD, in science.

download list of awards >>