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To honour innovative PhD research the Holland Research School of Molecular Chemistry awards yearly the Dick Stufkens Prize. Edition 2017 is awarded to Sven Askes of Leiden University. Askes describes a clever combination of materials and techniques for a new approach in photochemical cancer therapy.

Jury rapport

According to the jury of the Dick Stufkens Prize 2017 Sven Askes has with intelligence and perseverance overcome many of the hurdles hampering the development of the new photochemotherapy approach. In doing so he has mastered and applied a wide variety of chemical, spectroscopic, microscopic and biochemical techniques and produced an impressive number of publications in high-ranked journals that also document his extensive collaborations with other researchers.The jury is impressed by the quality, the originality and the interdisciplinary character of Sven Askes’s PhD thesis and expects that the work will have considerable impact on future development of photochemical cancer therapy.

Annual symposium

The Dick Stufkens Prize is awarded annually to the best thesis defended in the period July 1 to July 1 of the next year by a Ph.D. student belonging to the Holland Research School of Molecular Chemistry (HRSMC). The prize – first awarded in 2008 - consists of a certificate and an amount of 1000 euro.

On 16 November Prof. Jan Verhoeven will present the Dick Stufkens Prize 2017 to Sven Askes during the annual HRSMC symposium. This year the symposium will be organized at the Amsterdam Science Park Congress Centre. Apart from Sven Askes, who will give a lecture on his PhD research, various HRSMC PhD students and staff members will present lectures and posters. A guest lecture will be given by Spinoza laureate Prof. René Janssen (Eindhoven University of Technology). The symposium is open for non-HRSMC members. For further information and registration consult the website.

Website of the HRSMC Symposium 2017

Register for the HRSMC Symposium 2017


The Holland Research School of Molecular Chemistry was founded in 1994 and has been accredited by the Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW). The research school combines experimental and theoretical groups working on molecular chemistry and physics from the Universiteit van Amsterdam, the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and the Universiteit Leiden.