Mission and values

Nivel’s mission is ‘Research for better care’. How do we carry out this mission?


We carry out our mission ‘Research for better care’ in conducting ‘high quality health services research in the broadest sense, which has a demonstrable impact upon society'. From out this mission statement we defined our two core values: ‘scientific quality and societal relevance’ and ‘applied and applicable’.

Meer wetenGo to our Research Agenda 2022-2024 and read about our focus on four urgent societal challenges

The coming years, next to its ‘regular’  research in the wide scope of healthcare (services), at Nivel we will focus on four 'societal challenges' we have drawn up in our Research Agenda 2022-2024. They concern society as a whole and also take up a prominent place in the sector of health and healthcare:

Take a look at our agenda!

Praktijkgericht en wetenschappelijkValue ‘Scientific quality and societal relevance’

Nivel’s expertise is available for the great and diverse group of organisations and other parties active in relevant areas of expertise:

  • scientific research organisations
  • governmental bodies: the Dutch and foreign ministries, the European Union
  • organisations representing healthcare professionals, healthcare consumers and healthcare insurance companies

Good to know: ISO-9001 accreditation

In 2016 an independent international review committee has rated, very highly, the scientific quality and societal relevance of Nivel’s research together with the viability of the organisation as a whole (Assessment Report). In 2014 we received once again the full ISO-9001 accreditation.

View on societal relevance

Our research is based on the idea that health services research is not a linear but a continuous process of development and interaction between both the societal and the research domains:

Translation of societal issues into research questions and vice versa:

Both policy issues and practical problems in the healthcare sector need to be translated into research questions, and the research itself has to be sensitive to problems existing in the healthcare sector.

By co-creation with partners in society:

This so-called translation is facilitated by our researchers, in consulting with policymakers and other stakeholders in order to achieve the most valid study design.

With regard to suitability and feasibility:

Our stakeholders determine whether the research design developed will give answers to their questions or problems (suitability). Our researchers determine whether the stakeholders’ needs are feasible.

Leading to research results implemented in society and policy:

Research conclusions, its interpretation of results and its meaning for daily practice may then lead to new policy or to an adjustment of existing policy.

Leading to new societal issues which need to be translated into research questions:

New questions and/or problems automatically arise after implementation. They can then be translated into further research: step 1.

View on scientific quality research

We secure the conduct of high quality research, on a scientific basis, applying the following principles:

Upholding scientific standards:

Nivel’s research has to be performed and assessed according to the prevailing scientific standards, because the continuous process of developing and interacting (see above) only works when its underlying research products are of the highest quality. High standards of scientific research is a relevant value in its own right, but academic reputation is also important because it fosters society’s acceptance and use of the results of our research and this in turn affects the recruitment and retention of talented researchers.

Intergrating relevant societal issues:

Nivel’s ability to integrate its health services research with relevant societal issues - from different perspectives - makes it a unique partner in the policymaking process and a contributor to improving policy and practice in health care. Because of the high scientific quality of Nivel’s research, policymakers can reliably base their decisions on our results.

ResultatenValue ‘Applied and applicable’

Nivel’s main view on health services research is that of a multidisciplinary field focusing on the delivery, quality, costs and access to care from the perspective of various stakeholders. Central to our approach is the interaction between patients,  care professionals and organisations occupied with healthcare on the broadest sense. We study this interaction and its outcomes in relation to governance structures, meanwhile investigating characteristics of patients, care professionals and organisations.

  • Applied research: our research draws on theories and methods from several disciplines, including epidemiology, medical sociology, psychology, human geography, health economics, medicine, nursing and physiotherapy.
  • Applicable research: our research focuses on issues that are relevant to the actors in healthcare and policy. Its potential use in policy-making processes is continuously borne in mind. Nivel’s research aims to contribute to evidence-informed policy.

Good to know: statutory obligation to publish the results of all its activities

Nivel’s activities include the collation and publication of existing knowledge and evidence in scientific, professional and policy journals, reports, bibliographies, reviews, summaries and fact sheets. Nivel has a statutory obligation to publish the results of all its activities.

Meer wetenWant to know more? Contact us

Interested in exploring the options of doing research together with Nivel? Or in more information about Nivel as national research institute? Please feel free to contact us:

  • Our executive director Cordula Wagner will tell you more about Nivel as national scientific research institute.
  • Our head of research unit Primary Care and of Support International Research Jeroen Hasselaar will tell you more about out ongoing international projects and about cooperating with Nivel as partner in health services research.
  • Our experts on the specific fields of healthcare research will tell you more about their field of expertise and about doing research with Nivel within this field. Take a look at their individual research programs!


Zenderen, I.van (Nivel Research Communication Center). Mission and values. From: www.nivel.nl [Last update 05-February-2024; consulted on 29-February-2024]. URL: https://www.nivel.nl/en/about-nivel/mission-and-values