Maartje C. de Jong

Research Summary
My ultimate research goal is to understand how the brain organizes and interprets visual information to build a meaningful image of the world around us and to understand how this goes wrong in clinical disorders. I am particularly interested in manipulating perception while measuring associated neural responses to unravel how perception is shaped by both external and internal factors. By combining the unique information that different recording techniques provide, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electro-encephalography (EEG) and electro-corticography (ECoG), I aim to get the best possible view of the computations that occur in the brain when we become aware of what we see. Reflecting the multi-disciplinary nature of this research topic, I have worked at various institutes either specialized in clinical research, fundamental research or methodological advances. As an undergraduate I published a project on atypical processing of social visual cues in a clinical population with autism spectrum disorders. During my PhD project I investigated how sensory processing and perceptual memory are intertwined in occipital regions in the brain and I set up an ECoG project on the brain's responses to visual illusions, which I currently still continue. I recently obtained an Amsterdam Brain and Cognition Centre (ABC) Talent grant for a project in which I combine population receptive field mapping (7T fMRI) with a pharmacological intervention that interferes with visual processing to directly link the system-level (brain regions) with the biochemical (neurotransmitters) mechanisms underlying conscious perception. I have a background in Biology and Cognitive Neuroscience (Master's degree with highest distinction).

Academic employment history
2018-present Postdoctoral researcher: Cortical processing of visual illusions.
Spinoza Centre for Neuroimaging Amsterdam. Close collaborations with (among others) Amsterdam Brain and Cognition centre (ABC) [see project description] and University Medical Centre Utrecht [see publication].
2012-2018 Postdoctoral researcher: Visuo-tactile integration in near-body space
Dept. Experimental Psychology, Utrecht University, The Netherlands.
I was unable to work during much of this period due to severe illness.
[see interview in Trouw]
2007-2012 PhD student: Neural mechanisms underlying temporal modulation of visual perception
Dept. Physics of Man, Utrecht University, The Netherlands.
[PDF]  [abstract]  [short abstract in Dutch]
2006 Research Assistant: Visual Perception in Autism
University Medical Centre, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Education
2015 Helmholtz Research School [PDF of PhD thesis]
Science Faculty, Utrecht University. Courses in MRI data analysis, linear systems analysis, visual neuroscience and scientific writing.
2007 Neuroscience & Cognition International Prestigious Master (cum laude, GPA=3.9)
Medical Faculty, Utrecht University. Two internships: EEG study on visual perception in autism (published in JACAAP) and fMRI study on ambiguous visual perception (part of PhD thesis). Literature thesis with Victor Lamme and Simon van Gaal on subliminal priming.
2005 Biology Bachelor
Biology Faculty, Utrecht University, The Netherlands. Additional courses in psychology, physics, mathematics and teaching. Literature thesis with Rob de Boer and Daniël van der Post on mathematical models that describe collective movement of herbivores.

Grants and Awards
- Talent grant of the Amsterdam Brain & Cognition centre (ABC), interdisciplinary centre for
  cognitive scientists, University of Amsterdam, 2019 (125K euro).
- 'Dance Your PhD'-contest winner in the category Biology, Science Magazine, AAAS (Am. Ass.
  for the Advancement of Science), 2010.
- Selected for FENS (Forum of European NeuroScience) summer school on visual neuroscience, fully
  sponsored visit to Rauischholzhausen, Germany, 2010.
- VVB-BMT (Dutch Soc. for Biophysics and Biomedical Technology) travel award for foreign lab visit to
  Randolph Blake, Vanderbilt Vision Research Center, USA, 2010.
- VSS (Vision Sciences Society) travel award, 2010.
- Talma-Eijkman Award for outstanding undergraduate research project, 2008.
- Prize for best poster presentation at the SWUMC (science event for undergraduates at University
  Medical Centre Utrecht), 2007.
- Selected for Excellent Tracé, discussion group for excellent Biology students with Prof. Dr. ir. Ben
  Scheres.

Selection of Media Appearances
- Trouw, Interview, published 8 Dec. 2018 (national newspaper). [link]
- NEMO kennislink, Interview, published 18 Nov. 2015 (online national scientific newspaper). [link]
- Netherlands Organization for Sci. Research (NWO): interview, published online 5 Oct. 2015. [link]
- ScienceFlash wetenschapsjournaal, Nederlandse Televisie en Radio omroep (NTR), interview,
  broadcasted 23 Sept. 2011 (national television). [link]
- De Redactie, interview, broadcasted 21 Sept. 2011 (Belgian radio). [link]
- 'Arts & Auto', National society for medical professionals, interview, published Nov. 2010 (medical
  magazine). [link]
- 'De Psycholoog', National Institute for Psychologists (NIP), interview, published Nov. 2010
  (psychology magazine). [link]
- CultureLab, NewScientist, published 19 Oct. 2010 (international online newspaper). [link]
- Viva, interview, published 5 Oct. 2010 (popular national women's magazine). [link]
- Trouw, interview, published 30 Sept. 2010 (national newspaper). [link]

Other Experience
Teaching and Supervision
2017-present    Daily supervision of MSc and PhD students.
2008-2011         Teacher of lectures and practicals, Science Faculty, Utrecht University.
2008                  Evaluator new education material 'Heart & Veins', Junior College Utrecht.
2007-2013         Daily supervision of BSc and MSc students.
2006-2009         Working as dance instructor and performer.
2004-2006         Mathematics coach for high school students.
2004                  Traineeship as high school biology teacher, Oosterlicht College, Nieuwegein.
Administrative Experience
2018                  Organizer of Weekend of Science, public event at Spinoza Centre.
2010-2014         Editor of 'Helmholtz Herald', quarterly letter of Helmholtz Institute.
2009-2011         Member of PhD candidate council, Science Faculty, Utrecht University.
2005                  Organizer of Neuroscience & Cognition symposium, Utrecht University.
Programming and Software
Selection of programming and software skills: Matlab (MathWorks), Presentation (Neurobehavioral Systems), Mathematica (Wolfram Research), Photoshop & Illustrator (Adobe), BrainVision Analyzer (Brain Products), BrainVoyager (Brain Innovation), SPSS (IBM), Micorsoft Office.

Publications
See Publications tab.