Writing a competitive VICI proposal for the Dutch NWO Talent Scheme

Obtaining a VENI-, VIDI- or VICI grant from NWO is an important milestone in the research career of (young) scientists in the Netherlands. The Talent Scheme is highly competitive with average success rates between 10% and 20%, depending on year and science division.

In the European context of, for example, ERC grants and Marie Curie grants, reviewers perceive obtaining such a national grant as an important sign of excellence and independence.

We will address the typical characteristics of a VICI application (pre-proposal + full proposal including rebuttal). In addition, focus will be on evaluation criteria and evaluation questions to be addressed by the external referees and the proposal format, including their inter-relationship.


Participants will receive strategic and practical input for developing a competitive VICI project and writing a convincing proposal thereby increasing their chances to receive this prestigious grant.

Who should attend

This workshop is directed towards talented researchers who consider submitting a NWO VICI pre-proposal in the near future.


The workshop will be in English. Active participation and commitment from the course participants is a key factor for the success of this training. Numerous examples, tips, tricks, and best practice will be presented. Several small exercises / assignments will be implemented.


Aya van den Kroonenberg PhD, from Yellow Research, and Ir Erik Prins have extensive experience with running Talent Scheme workshops and pre-submission reviews of corresponding proposals. Both trainers have more than 15 years of experience with reviewing and writing Dutch and European research proposals.

Programme Outline



Part I

Introduction Talent Scheme Programme

  • Particular focus on VICI
  • Comparison with other (international) research grants
Part II

Evaluation process

  • Competition
  • Evaluation steps
  • Who is your audience?
  • Lessons learned from an evaluator
Part III

Research project

  • Before you start writing, concept development
  • Evaluation criteria and questions for the external referees related to the quality of the research project.
  • Proposal format Section 2a

Lunch for attendees and opportunity to ask questions

Part IV

Principal investigator

  • Evaluation criteria and questions for the external referees
  • How to demonstrate your excellence in a VICI proposal? Section 4+5
Part V

Evaluation criterion knowledge utilization

  • Evaluation criteria and questions for the external referees.
  • Stakeholder analysis, proposal format Section 2b
Part VI

Registration form and budget


End of course

Course fee

The YR course fee is € 595,00 per participant (VAT exempted), incl. coffee & tea, lunch and course materials.

Date, Location, Contact

Date(s): not scheduled, available as in-house event

Time: 10:00 – 17:00

Location: Yellow Research, Veembroederhof 5-7, 1019 HD, Amsterdam


Click on the blue button ‘Book this course’ on the top of this page to book online. For questions about this course, please contact Sarah Jones at jones[at]yellowresearch[dot]nl .