Laws and regulations concerning ZonMw

Gebouw ZonMw
ZonMw manages a considerable budget that is financed by public funding. Responsibilities, rules and procedures have been established to safeguard our expertise and integrity in carrying out our statutory task. Here you can read about the legislation, policy rules and codes of conduct that further shape the tasks and responsibilities of ZonMw.


ZonMw has emerged from two organisations: the former organisation for research into care, ZorgOnderzoek Nederland (ZON), and the Domain Medical Sciences (MW) of the Dutch Research Council (NWO). When these organisations merged, the decision was taken to use the name ZonMw. ZonMw is used as the name of the organisation and not as an abbreviation.

ZorgOnderzoek Nederland (ZON) was established by law in 1998 (ZON Act). Since 2001, there has been a partnership between ZON and the domain Medical Sciences (MW in Dutch) of the Dutch Research Council (NWO). This partnership is called ZonMw. ZonMw is an independent administrative body and its main contractors are NWO and the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport.

Governance regulation

The governance regulation states how the board works, the appointment and composition of programme committees and how they work, and the tasks and responsibilities of the director

General Terms and Conditions Governing Grants ZonMw

The rights and obligations of grant applicants and grant recipients of ZonMw emerge from the General Administrative Law Act (Awb). Section 4.2 of the Awb contains general provisions that are applicable to grants from ZonMw.

In addition to these, ZonMw also applies its own General Terms and Conditions Governing Grants ZonMw that, in brief, list the obligations imposed on the grant recipient upon accepting the grant. It also contains conditions that are relevant for the entire process of providing grants. For example, it contains provisions concerning Open Access policy, definitions, applying for a grant, adherence to relevant codes of conduct, the obligation to publish, determining the grant and finances. Additional conditions may apply for a specific funding round, in which case these are added to the call for proposals of the programme.

Which grant provisions apply to your project depends on the period in which the project was awarded funding.

Projects awarded funding since 1 April 2022

With effect from 1 April 2022, the General Terms and Conditions Governing Grants ZonMw 2013 with respect to the final responsibility for the grant recipient were amended. The biggest change is that, from now on, projects with a grant of € 125,000 or more must provide an auditor's statement from an accountant for the final report. The change applies to all grants awarded funding after 1 April 2022. The final report for grants awarded before the date 1 April 2022, can be submitted under the rules of the General Terms and Conditions Governing Grants ZonMw published in 2013.

Projects awarded funding before 1 April 2022

If your project was awarded funding before 1 April 2022, then the granting conditions with effect from 1 July 2013 and/or 1 January 2009 apply.

Code of Conduct on Conflicts of Interests

The assessment of and decisions about grant proposals submitted to ZonMw may not be influenced by any form of prejudice. ZonMw therefore ensures that people involved in this process with a personal interest in a certain proposal, do not allow this to influence the task they carry out for ZonMw. The Code of Conduct on Conflicts of Interest describes how ZonMw deals with personal interests within the process of allocating funding. In addition, the code states how decisions about dealing with personal interests should be motivated and recorded. This enables ZonMw to account for its decisions at any given moment.

The code applies to members of decision-taking bodies, ZonMw employees, referees and committee members who are involved in the preparation of advice, issuing advice and making decisions about allocating ZonMw resources.

Integrity and codes of conduct

ZonMw attaches great value to the integrity of the projects it funds and is committed to preventing and identifying violations of integrity. After a project has been awarded funding, it should be realised in a proper manner and with integrity. That includes the following principles: honest, meticulous, transparent, independent and accountable. These principles are laid down in the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity. If a (possible) breach of integrity occurs in your project, you must inform ZonMw about this immediately. As part of this, you need to hand over all relevant documents about the (possible)integrity breach to ZonMw.

In the case of non-scientific projects, ZonMw expects project leaders to adopt an active and thorough prevention and integrity policy. They should ensure there is a low threshold procedure in place for reporting integrity issues. Individuals who report such matters must also receive adequate support. Employees should possess a valid Certificate of good conduct (VOG). If a (possible) integrity breach occurs in your project, you must inform ZonMw about this immediately. As part of this, you need to hand over all relevant documents about the integrity breach to ZonMw.

Codes of conduct

ZonMw at any rate subscribes to the following codes of conduct, in so far as these are not in conflict with legislation. By subscribing to these codes of conduct, ZonMw expects researchers to comply with them to safeguard the (scientific) integrity of their actions