About us

With the enrichment program of Rewarded! the sum of all grants from the pilot fund becomes greater than ‘mere’ remuneration. The purpose of Rewarded! is supporting and inspiring participating research groups; to make best practices & lessons learned widely accessible and to advise knowledge institutions about facilitating and appreciating science communication and public engagement by scientists.

Rewarded! is implemented by the KNAW and was made possible by the support of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. Originally, the project Rewarded! was to be carried out by KNAW Awards & Funds in collaboration with the national expertise center of public engagement ‘Samenweten’. Unfortunately the initiative Samenweten has ended on the 1st of January 2022. Its contributions are secured in the program that will run until October 2022.

The project Rewarded! encompasses the following activities and initiatives:


Researchers that received a grant from the pilot fund can participate free of charge in a series of workshops that provide new insights into science communication and public engagement. During these workshops there is room to get to know each other and to share experiences. Some workshops are also accessible to other researchers who are interested in science communication and public engagement. Please don’t hesitate to let us know if you are interested in participating in a specific program but have not received an award from the pilot fund.


During the project Rewarded! (April 2021 – October 2022) we work on building a network of scientists working on science communication and public engagement via the website and social media channels of verrijkinggewaardeerd.nl. Here, scientists can find inspiration and tools about science communication and public engagement, and get to know other scientists that care about science communication and public engagement.


Athena Instituut VU
As part of the enrichment programme, Sem Barendse and Willemine Willems, led by Dr. Frank Kupper (Athena Institute, VU) investigate what researchers need in terms of structure, culture and skills to conduct meaningful science communication. Together with the Rewarded! groups, they map out the dilemmas and wishes scientists have when they are involved with science communication. Their findings are based on interviews, observations and study of literature.

Collaboration Impactlab
Comissioned by NWA/NWO, Impactlab has developed instruments that provide scientists with tools to measure the impact of their science communication activities. Rewarded! collaborates with Impactlab to provide Rewarded-scientists tools that help them measure the impact of their activities. Researchers can share their data with Impactlab via the upload zone.


The closing convention of the enrichment program will take place on Thursday afternoon, June 23, at the KNAW Trippenhuis in Amsterdam. All Rewarded! participants are cordially invited. The hybrid program consists of pitches from prominent speakers from the science communication field as well as interactive sessions with all attendees.

Advisory report

We end the project Rewarded! with substantiated guideline for universities, research institutes and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science about facilitating and valuing scientists who work on science communication. The report will be based on findings from the Athena Institute VU-research as well as reactions and input gathered during the sessions at the closing convention of the enrichment program.


April 2021, more than 90 research groups received a contribution of €10,000 to organize new activities in the field of science communication. The Gewaardeerd! pilot fund, a one-off financial incentive, is aimed at recognizing and valuing scientists who make structural efforts towards science communication and public engagement. The fund intends to emphasize that involving public groups in scientific research is an essential part of an academic career. The Rewarded! enrichment program aims to further substantiate and disseminate this view. The pilot fund, carried out KNAW, was made financially possible by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science.

Advisory board

  • Peter-Paul Verbeek
  • Rianne Letschert
  • Hanneke Hulst

Four Rewarded-ambassadors from different scientific disciplines:

  • Martijn Wieling
  • Eveline Brouwers
  • Kris Bevelander
  • Marieke Kootte