In February 2019, an international independent assessment committee reviewed the quality, impact, relevance and viability of the eScience Center over the period January 2014-June 2018. The committee was impressed with the technological expertise and concluded that the research is of excellent quality. According to the multidisciplinary committee of experts, the eScience Center has national leadership in its core areas of research. A number of recommendations was made to further improve the visibility and impact of the eScience Center's work.
The committee praised the fast progress since the inception of the center. The open calls and in-kind funding mechanism to select and conduct projects across the country were identified as unique and effective. The academic relevance and the leadership of the organization in terms of digitalization was highly appreciated. Besides the organization's involvement with a wide range of stakeholders and disciplines, the committee commended the eScience Center's involvement in training and workshops, conferences, advisory boards, the NWA, international research projects and joint research calls.
For the future, the committee recommends taking up a leading role in open science and the stimulation of software reuse. To further increase the impact of the eScience Center’s work, closer connections should be established with eScience initiatives within universities and with international eScience Centers. Also, possibilities for public-private partnerships should be more actively explored. The recommendations will be taken into account in the future strategy of the eScience Center.
The Evaluation Committee members were prof. Emmo Meijer (Topsector Chemistry, chair), prof. Dorret Boomsma (VU Amsterdam), prof. David De Roure (Oxford University), prof. Simone Hochgreb (Cambridge University), prof. Sverker Holmgren (Uppsala University) and prof. Maarten van Steen (University of Twente). The full report can be downloaded here.