Academic excellence does not get better than Marten Scheffer’s Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management chair
At least, that is what we can conclude from the assessment of a visitation to 39 Dutch research groups in the field of environmental and sustainability sciences. Scheffer’s group was the only one to be awarded the maximum score by an international committee of 40 professors. The group was praised to the skies. ‘Such an exceptional group as this should be formally acknowledged and rewarded for its excellent research and leadership,’ states the visitation report. All too often good leadership of research groups goes unacknowledged, adds the report. Scheffer’s group, says the jury, is a shining example to research groups both at home and abroad. The group got the maximum score of five points for academic quality and productivity as well as for social impact and viability.
Other Wageningen chair groups in the field of environmental and sustainability- related research are doing well too. With just half a point less, Environmental Policy (Tuur Mol) and Microbiology (Willem de Vos) were in second place (shared with others). More than a quarter of the evaluated groups in the Netherlands are world leaders in their field. The groups are part of the national research school SENSE, which stands for Socio- Economic and Natural Sciences of the Environment. SENSE provides join training programmes for the more than 600 participating PhD candidates. Wageningen’s WIMEK (Wageningen Institute for Environmental and Climate Research) is a SENSE institute.