SURF Research Week

SURF Research Week is the national conference about research and ICT. The first edition of this new, larger, multidisciplinary event took place on 13, 14 and 15 April 2021

SURF Research Week

SURF Research Support Champions

Good research supporters form a bridge between researchers and research IT. Vital work, but often invisible. The SURF Research Support Champion awards put in the spotlight those who have made remarkable efforts to support research within their institution. The winners of this first edition were announced during SURF Research Week 2021.

SURF Research Support Champions 2021 Maria Kamp Mariette van Selm Bob van Dijk

The SURF Research Support Champions 2021: Maria Kamp, Mariëtte van Selm and Bob van Dijk

It was no easy task for the jury to compile a top three, with so many strong candidates. Moreover, the nominees fulfil various functions and roles, and the institutions where they work organise research support in different ways. Nevertheless, the jury unanimously selected the following three winners:

In the category Universities:

Maria Kamp, Coordinator Research Support at University of Twente 

“Puts herself in the shoes of the researchers

The jury report says: Maria was nominated by no fewer than 5 colleagues. She inspires others with her decisive approach and collaborative mentality. Maria puts herself in the shoes of the researchers, which really helps her to support them. She takes all kinds of administrative work off their hands, so that the researchers can focus on their primary task, and always comply with data management and ethics requirements.

In the category Universities of Applied Sciences:

Mariëtte van Selm, Coordinator Research Data Management (RDM) support at the UvA-HvA library

“An indispensable adviser”

The jury report says: An indispensable adviser. With unflagging energy and pragmatic commitment, Mariëtte helps researchers obtain, process, manage and sustainably archive research data. She listens well and brings the right people together at the right time. Mariëtte is a valuable link between the worlds of applied sciences and academia. Within the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and the University of Amsterdam the term RDM is inextricably linked to her name.

In the category UMC & Research:

Bob van Dijk, adviser High Performance Computing at Amsterdam UMC

“Builds the bridge between researcher and research IT”

The jury report: Because of his solid, substantive, cross-domain knowledge, organisation-wide contacts and very helpful approach, Bob is the pivot of all HPC activities within Amsterdam UMC. This Research Support Champion builds the bridge between researcher and research IT by guiding researchers in technical solutions and translating their support request to technical requirements for research IT. Moreover, this widely respected expert can always be approached by colleagues for a virtual coffee.

Download the full jury report (pdf)


  • Ron Augustus, chief innovation officer SURF (chairperson of the jury)
  • Joris van Eijnatten, director Netherlands eScience Center
  • Petra Drankier, senior policy advisor Nederlandse Federatie van Universitair Medische Centra (NFU)
  • Mariska van der Giessen, chairperson Vereniging van Lectoren
  • Lisa Oskam, board member Promovendi Netwerk Nederland
Portretten van de jury

Why this award? 

By research supporters we mean anyone who supports researchers in the field of research data management and IT. With the storing, managing, archiving and sharing of their research data, but also with software development and advice on research applications. For example, data stewards, ICT professionals, library staff or research assistants.

By creating this prize, we want to give research supporters at institutions a platform and inspire others. The entries were judged by looking at the way the nominee’s contribution to research support is outstanding, the way in which they connect the needs of researchers with research support, and the impact of their work.