NWO organises community conversations on St. Maarten



PHILIPSBURG- The Caribbean Research programme of the Dutch Research Council (NWO) is developing a knowledge agenda with residents of the Caribbean part of the Kingdom. This knowledge agenda maps out where the most pressing societal questions lie and how scientific research can contribute to answers to them. In June and July 2024, the NWO will organise public meetings in the six islands to check whether the content is recognised. Monday the 24th to Friday the 28st of June there will be meetings in St. Maarten.

Community conversations at the University of St. Martin

A ‘community conversation’ will take place on Wednesday the 26th of June at the University of St. Martin. The meeting will start at 18:30 and will end at 20:30. Everyone is invited to join the conversation. During the meeting, the team will identify which topic or topics are of high interest. NWO will then organise a follow-up discussion on Thursday the 27th of June at the same location. You will receive more information about this during the meeting on Wednesday. 

On the other days, shorter meetings will be held with interested stakeholders. These may be individuals, representatives of organisations, or a number of organisations together. If you are interested in such a meeting, please contact us at caribbean@nwo.nl. The visit to St. Maarten begins on Monday with a meeting at the University of St. Martin. This meeting will focus on the conditions for being able to conduct research. The organisation of that meeting is in the hands of the university.

Dutch Caribbean Research Week

The knowledge agenda was drawn up on the basis of extensive surveys of residents and researchers of the six islands on social issues in 2019 and 2021. Following the ‘community conversations’ and other discussions in June and July, the revised knowledge agenda will be drawn up. The communities of the six islands are invited to participate in the sessions in order to decide for themselves what will be included in the knowledge agenda. NWO also wants to know how the Caribbean communities see a role for themselves in the development or implementation of scientific research. The final knowledge agenda will be presented during the Dutch Caribbean Research Week in October 2024. After that, NWO is keen to work with Caribbean communities to enable new research based on the knowledge agenda.

The team that will conduct the interviews in St. Maarten consists of Edrieënna Brandao, Lysanne Charles, Danick Trouwloon, Elton Villarreal and, on behalf of NWO, Dr Arnold Lubbers, coordinator of the Caribbean Research programme. If you are interested in an interview, please contact us at caribbean@nwo.nl