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Theme Groups

Theme Groups bring together scholars of different backgrounds with specific expertise to work together on a daily basis, to advance knowledge on a particular theme.

Each year, one to three research theme groups come to NIAS to carry out research that requires a longer period of daily cooperation. Theme groups are composed of maximum five scholars, and researchers work both individually and as a team on a clearly defined research topic.


  1. Refuge and Belonging

  2. Accessible Tool for Language Assessment in Schools (ATLAS)

  3. The Politics of (De)familiarization: The Common and the Strange in Contemporary Europe

  4. Building a Research Agenda in the Studies of War, Mass Violence and Genocide

  5. Accountability in Medical Autonomous Expert Systems: Ethical and Epistemological Challenges for Explainable AI

  6. Legal Mobilization: Analyzing Law-Based Advocacy

  7. Understanding Knowledge in the Low Countries, 1500-1900

  8. What is Translation? Articulating the Missing Link between Psychiatry and Neuroscience

  9. Comparing the Wars of Decolonization

  10. Commodity Frontiers and the Making of Global Capitalism

  11. Reading and Narrating the Migration/Refugee Crisis

  12. Borders and the Transfer of Knowledge

  13. Diaspora, Migration and the Sciences: A New Integrated Perspective

  14. The Comparative Biology of Language Learning: Towards the Next Level

  15. Knowledge and the Market: Affective Economies

  16. My Optimism Wears Heavy Boots: So much research, so few implications, towards ‘patient-proof’ empirical models and more effective interventions in mental health

  17. From Multidisciplinary Perspectives to Interdisciplinary Pathways: An Agenda for Future Retirement Research and Policy

  18. Gene x Environment Interactions in the Developing Brain

  19. Knowledge and the City, ca. 1450 – ca. 1800

  20. Mass Communication in Classical Antiquity

  21. The Evolution of Financial Markets in Pre-Industrial Europe: The Case of the Low Countries, 1500-1800

  22. The Real and the Imagined in the Contemporary Balkans

  23. European Elections and Public Cynicism

  24. Terrorscapes. Transnational Memory of Totalitarian Terror and Genocide in Postwar Europe

  25. Dutch Atlantic Connections: The Circulation of People, Goods and Ideas in the Atlantic world, 1600-1800

  26. Texture Analysis Challenge for The Arts

  27. The Construction of Local Identities through Language Practices

  28. Modelling Social Reality: Emergence of the Glass Ceiling

  29. Understanding Information Spreading in Social Networks

  30. Explaining European Union Decision-Making: Insights from the Natural and the Social Sciences

  31. Biographies of Buildings: Virtual Futures for our Cultural Past

  32. Social Support: Channels, Contexts, Health Consequences, and Technological Applications

  33. Capturing Phylogenetic Algorithms for Linguistics

  34. The Danger of Community Failure: Conditions for Solidary Behaviour in Modern Market Societies

  35. Network Analysis

  36. Rethinking the History of Medicine: 'Rationality' and 'Magic' in Babylonia and the Graeco-Roman World

  37. The East - West Encounter

  38. A Comparative History of the Literatures of East Central Europe

  39. East Asian and Latin American Developments Compared

  40. Flexibility and Strategy in Resource Allocation

  41. National Systems of Innovation and the Idea - Innovation Chain

  42. Tatian's Diatessaron

  43. Historical Developmental Psychology

  44. Translation Techniques in Armenian and Syriac

  45. An Encyclopaedia of Syntactic Case Studies

  46. Stratification in Eastern and Western Europe in the 1990s

  47. Pacific Asia and Europe: Developing Interfaces

  48. Bilingualism

  49. Political Parties and the Quality of Democracy

  50. Human Syntactic Processing

  51. Magic and Religion in the Ancient Near East

  52. The History of Dutch Concepts

  53. Understanding Social Dilemmas

  54. Theatre Iconography

  55. Forensic Expertise and the Law of Evidence in Europe

  56. Inventing Europe. A Transnational History of European Integration

  57. Terrorists on Trial. The Court Room as a Stage in the Struggle for Publicity, Public Support and Legitimacy

  58. Flavius Josephus - Author, Editor or Historian?

  59. Coming to Terms with a Shattered World: A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Violence in Africa

  60. Games, Action and Social Software

  61. Restricted Linguistic Systems as Windows on Language Genesis

  62. Rulers, History and Exegesis in the Early Middle Ages: The Formation of Carolingian Political Identity

  63. The Grotian Concept of Rights

  64. A New View on Survey Research

  65. Environmental History of Southeast Asia, 1500 - 2000

  66. Older adults' life strategies in preparing for the future

  67. The Reception of Netherlandish Art in the Indian Ocean Region and East Asia, and its Impact on Asian Cultures

  68. The Modern and Postmodern Augustine. Aspects of His Reception from 1600 to 2000

  69. Discourses of meditation and self-reflection in art and literature, 1300-1600

  70. HUGO - Hague Utilities for Global Organisations -