Frans van den Beemt, PhD studied the assessment processes within funding agencies, for instance during his three months stay at the National Science Foundation (NSF) in Arlington USA. As an experiment, he changed proposals a little bit or changed the rebuttal or changed specific comments of the peers and resubmitted these applications in the assessment system. This was only possible in consultation with the board of The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). Sometimes only the replacement of a few words was enough to change the overall assessment from poor to excellent. In 1998 he founded VdBeemt 2G Advies and in 2007 HandsonGrants. At present he applies his expertise with HandsonGrants helping researchers to apply more successfully for national or international grants.

Peter de Zoete, MSc studied philosophy and psychology. For ten years he worked in the field of applied psychology and cofounded a consultancy firm Awareness in The Hague on effective communication. He uses concepts from the psychology of persuasion to raise public awareness on societal issues. From here, he got interested in the psychology of group decision making. Combining this interest with his ability in writing, he joined HandsonGrants. The fundamental lesson is how to write your grant proposal on the basis of the actual – not always explicitly stated – criteria as applied by the assessors.

Els Cramwinckel, MSc studied law and communication (NeuroLinguisticProgramming). For seven years she worked as a company lawyer at the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), dealing, among other things, with objections and appeals in case of rejected proposals. As a trainer in communication and personal development she enjoys helping people to make the most of their own capacities. This background is a strong basis for training scientists to make the most of their presentation and to learn them how to capture and hold the committee’s interest. She joined HandsonGrants already in 2007.

Gerald Tory, has a financial and legal background. For 10 years he worked for several companies, in financial management. After that period he worked as the head of finance for the Technology Foundation STW for 13 years. In that role he set up large programs like Nanoned and Tissue Engineering, besides the 600 regular projects within the technical Universities. In 2007 he started his own business. He worked for several large governmental programs. He worked with most Universities in The Netherlands. Gerald Tory is specialized in starting up new programs. In temporary (4 years) projects sometimes over 30 partners provide cash and natura support. He succeeds in keeping these financial complex systems effective and workable for managers and researchers involved. That is why he joined HandsonGrants in 2014.