e/MTIC – Task Force Teams

e/MTIC Taskforce Teams

One of the major steps that was taken with the formal establishment of e/MTIC was the establishment of Taskforce Teams. While research and innovation subjects are unique, there is an increasing common basis that can be leveraged and actually must be leveraged across domains in order to keep efficiency and focus on the core research. It is enabling researchers to find their way and leverage best practices. It is infrastructure, but in a much wider sense than the traditional hardware laboratory environment. The Taskforce Teams therefore contribute to the ‘fast track to clinical innovation’ by offloading time consuming and diverting processes away from the core research and innovation.


The e/MTIC Taskforce Teams are on:

+ Education
+ Regulatory affairs
+ Data – Health Data Platform
+ Valorisation and Value Based Healthcare
+ PhD support
+ Communication
+ Funding


This team is institutionalised at the Eindhoven University and provides PhD students with short courses on important aspects of health tech innovation. The courses provide aggregated experience and knowhow of collective learning in e/MTIC. Topics include regulatory processes, intellectual property rights, and data management regulations. Those courses not only contribute to smooth execution of individual PhD projects, but very much to education of a new breed of medical engineers, as this knowledge is extremely relevant in clinical and business practice. Feedback from graduates confirms this.

Learning from others, to prevent making mistakes which could have easily be avoided, is important if you want to do things faster and better.  That is why e/MTIC also has a task force on education.

We started with setting up three very important courses: on clinical regulatory, on data regulatory and how to deal well with intellectual property. Even when somebody does a PhD still far away from clinical practice, it is good to be aware of these regulations: the knowledge you generate will be used within these frameworks. And, of course, for people who do research in a clinical setting these regulations are simply the law: not following them can kill your project. And while these regulations might be boring, there is actually a lot of logic to them: they were made to distinguish the good from the bad. Understanding this logic can actually inspire you to do the right things first. As a next step we will develop a program on “system thinking”: how can you understand the overall system in which your work has to fit. And how can this help you in defining your research; to make it fit to is needed in the actual world. Not so simple, but there is a toolset which can help.

Best regards, Ward Cottaar, Chair of the Education Team


While the Education Team focuses on providing the courses, the Regulatory Team develops the practical insights and knowledge on the subject matter. For example, recent changes in legislation regarding Medical Device Registration (MDR) have created quite some complexity where even a common interpretation of legislation is still under development. Rather than having every PhD candidate find out what applies to his or her project, the Regulatory Team supports them in meeting legislative requirements, but also in finding the right (and fastest) way through all procedures. Other topics include data stewardship, consent, medical and ethical approval flows and good practices.


e/MTIC Health Data Board

MedTech innovation projects are increasingly data-driven and Artificial Intelligence (AI) is increasingly supporting students and staff in their research, as well as assisting healthcare professionals in diagnostics, triage, monitoring, workflow and treatments. And this is only the beginning of a transformation in healthcare that will be based on data and AI. Conducting a single data study confined to a single domain is usually not too complex. Often the medical doctor and the PhD student are entitled to use patient data based on consent within the institution and within the domain. But things become complicated when retrospective data is to be used outside the scope of its original collection, outside the institution and across domains. Maintaining privacy and security and guarantee - ing non-traceability requires a strictly professional approach that goes beyond the capability of an individual researcher, who rather focuses on finding the right data, quality and developing insights. e/MTIC has therefore established a Health Data Board that guides students and professionals in their data man - agement and creates a professional infrastructure to structurally solve the challenges for cross domain and cross organisation data sharing: the e/MTIC Health Data Portal (HDP). It goes beyond the scope of this paper to go into much detail, but the Health Data Board is linking its HDP devel - opment activities on a national level with Health-RI 2 ) and has a strategy to make things scalable and useable for stakeholders beyond the current e/MTIC partners. The Health Data Board not only addresses the technical challenges of secure data manage - ment and analytics, but also the legal framework and workflow require - ments. The current e/MTIC partners already have a solid experience in data management and access to a rich set of clinical data in their respective domains. The cross-domain analysis of this data has already contributed to important insights in diseases and treatment, such as in the relation between sleep disorder and cardiovascular diseases. By developing a high-quality meta-data catalogue can future generations of researchers be enabled to have easy access to valuable data.

1) Health-RI is the national initiative to facilitate and stimulate an integrated health data infrastructure accessible for researchers, citizens and care providers. It enables optimal use of health data, samples and images, as needed for a learning healthcare system and to accelerate personalised health.


Claiming a ‘fast track to clinical innovation’ requires one to take a valorisation perspective in the very early stage of the research program. Too often academics studies land on the shelf or in a drawer because boundary conditions for application in practice were not met or, more often, were considered someone else’s responsibility. While on the one hand some ‘separation of concerns’ is useful to have researchers focus on creative solutions, e/MTIC believes that more integral thinking in an early stage is required to create the breakthroughs that our healthcare system needs. And since one cannot expect every PhD student or researcher to have this mindset and capability, a Valorisation Team supports them in this matter. It is about identifying the roadblocks and challenges ahead that one could anticipate. And many can be, despite the uncertain nature of research and innovation. These include financial models, social acceptance and workflow conditions in the clinical practice. The relevance of outcome driven innovations will only increase in the coming years. Too many new treatments are launched while traditional ones still continue and this leads to an ever-increasing cost. New treatments (and prevention) should come in place of traditional ones and this can be stimulated by a Value Based Healthcare approach. Not straightforward to implement, as the parties that invest are not necessarily the ones that get the highest return on their investment, but overall there is a strong return on investment with increased patient satisfaction. This is why VBH principles are included in the portfolio of the valorisation team and are part of the education program.



The PhD students are the heart of e/MTIC. This initiation of the e/MTIC PhD team was triggered by one of the e/MTIC KPIs to keep 20% of all e/MTIC students and PhD candidates within the e/MTIC ecosystem after they finished their research project. A survey conducted with the >100 e/MTIC PhDs showed e/MTIC could improve on PhD support and communication. With different activities such as poster events, mailings, courses, introduction webinars and other specific programs, the exchange of information between the e/MTIC steering team and amongst the PhDs themselves has improved.

The PhD team was initiated in January 2021 and they went straight to work!  Each year we send a e/MTIC PhD community Questionnaire, where you can inform us about the things you need to be improved or things that already go well. From this input the first PhD introductory webinar on May 7th 2021 started. During this webinar the e/MTIC PhD’s are informed about Courses, How to reach experts, Data Management, Clinical Studies and Intellectual Property. Also, various e/MTIC PhDs will share their experiences within the three different domains; Sleep-, Cardiovascular- and Perinatal medicine. The sessions are being recorded and are available for all the e/MTIC PhD’s via MS Teams. Other subjects this team is working on: MSc Program (Proposal for extending e/MTIC community with master students, mentored by PhD’s), an e/MTIC PhD network via MS Teams (with introductory presentations of the e/MTIC PhD’s with the expertise) , and Poster, Pitch, Pizza events (organised per e/MTIC domain). So to all e/MTIC PhD’s(!):  Keep an eye out for the next invitations to join the e/MTIC PhD community activities. 

Check out the NEW  PhD/EngD Support page!


Creating an e/MTIC community is important for cross learning but also in positioning our approach to the outside world and particularly in corona times it is important to bring stakeholders together. Not only the approx. 100 PhD students and staff members, but also external stakeholders in our partner organisations (hospitals, university, business) and the healthcare ecosystem in the Netherlands. The communication team supports dissemination of results, an internal and external newsletter but also online webinars (and post-corona events) where researchers share their experience with colleagues. Communication is a core process in establishing an innovative ecosystem

Our scope:

  • Creating and expanding an ecosystem that enables fast track to high-tech health innovation and education
  • Establish alignment of e/MTIC activities and partner activities
  • To support the e/MTIC researchers in communicating their research results
  • To inform the e/MTIC community, stakeholders and the general MedTech public

Let's keep in touch! Warm regards from Chantal Schoen, Chair e/MTIC Communication team


While the Daily Management Teams (DMT) focus on private and public funding of the roadmap on their application domain, the Funding Team takes a more holistic approach on general funding opportunities, their constraints and boundary conditions and match with e/MTIC strategies. One of the guiding principles is that we don’t want to extend the scope of e/MTIC (by adding new domains) without realising at least the same basis in human and financial resources, i.e. without dilution of the basis. Since PhD projects have a scope of 4 years, it is important to look ahead and make sure that either new candidates and/or new subjects are identified in advance so that continuity is obtained. The Funding Team also serves as a preparation team for strategic direction.

The funding Team is also responsible for maintaining an up to date transparent overview of the overall e/MTIC program financial commitments and outlook, in particular the balance between cash contributions from partners and co-funding/matching obligations. The Funding Team does not address the organizational finance of e/MTIC, which is a Steering Team responsibility.

The objective of the funding team is:

  • To identify and acquire new funding sources beyond the established public calls and funding channels and manage existing funding sources across DMT’s;
  • To ensure overall predictability and growth/stability in the e/MTIC program funding level in line with the e/MTIC strategy;
  • To create full transparency and maintain overall consistency in multiyear financial commitments related to e/MTIC programs and projects and inflow of funding sources, thereby building on the information system of TU/e;
  • To support development of e/MTIC in general

The approach of the funding team is:

  • Conditioning / Lobbying: Approaching new funding sources (public and private) and influential organizations to promote e/MTIC as a whole and programs in particular, getting e/MTIC on the innovation agendas of those organisations. Understanding requirements;
  • Operational / Proposal submission: Advise DMT’s and Steering Team for follow up on new funding sources, explaining rights and obligations. Evaluation and learning on success rate.
  • Meeting structure: biweekly meeting on Wednesday (linked to the Steering Team) with standard agenda and special items. Tracking of actions and status in separate list. Status with regular status update presentation in the e/MTIC Steering Team.

Best regards, Kees van der Klauw, Chairman TF-Funding & Paul Merkus, Secretary TF-Funding

Chair - e/MTIC PhD Taskforce/Admin

Hey Everyone!

I am Vasudha Nallajarla, and I have taken over the role of Chair – e/MTIC PhD Taskforce/Admin from Melanie (previously e/MTIC Back Office Support). I started off on September 19th 2022 and I’m currently working two days a week. I will be handling the administrative aspects of e/MTIC, along with being the Chair of the e/MTIC PhD taskforce team.

To tell you a little bit more about myself, I am from India and I moved to the Netherlands in July 2022. I’ve previously had the opportunity, to work on the lines of customer success and business development in start-up environments. I’m really excited about this new journey and hoping to make a small yet meaningful contribution towards the organization.

Best Regards,
Vasudha Nallajarla