Working at home can be challenging in times like these. We all miss our daily routines, but most of all we miss the contact with colleagues, clients, stakeholders and other people around us. However, after a month working in challenging circumstances, we’re impressed by the amazing performances of our colleagues.

We are proud of how efficiently everyone is working together, to keep OnePlanet Research Centers’ work in researching and developing innovative technologies operational and successful!

How we do it? Let’s have a chat with one of our Biomedical R&D engineers, Ludovica Micaroni.

“We are one with the planet. We are one integrated organism. If the planet is not doing well, we are not doing well, and the other way around.”

What brought you to The Netherlands?

I was born and raised in Italy and came to The Netherlands almost four years ago. I did my masters at the Technical University in Eindhoven. The plan was to go back home after my studies to start my graduation in Italy. But I liked it so much in The Netherlands that I came back as soon as I could. Eventually I ended up at imec, one of the partners of OnePlanet Research Center. When I heard about the plans of OnePlanet I knew immediately that this is what I wanted to do. One thing led to another and now I’m working at OnePlanet Research Center.

We’d love to know more about why you choose to work for OnePlanet Research Center, but first: how do you handle the Corona crisis?

Actually, I enjoy working from home. I don’t have problems to be active at home and in the end my productivity even goes up. It’s a big plus that at OnePlanet we can all work quite well from our home offices. Nevertheless, in the end I don’t want to work from home all day every day. Especially all the digital meetings are a bit overwhelming. But I think everybody experiences it like this. So, together we make the best out of it.

Do you have a tip for other people working from home at the moment?

What works for me is that I add routine in my day. This helps me to get a better mental and physical rest. Every morning I start with practicing yoga. Before Corona I thought I was not able to do this. Now it turns out that its actually quite easy. You just need to want to do it. Set yourself a personal goal and make you head start working on finding solutions that fit that goal.

working from home coronavirus-Ludovica

“The big lockdown in Italy is much harder to handle for everybody than we experience in The Netherlands. Especially mentally. Luckily, we can and do stay in close contact via video calls.”

You are from Italy, that’s where the situation is at its worst in the whole of Europe. How is that for you?

I’m used to be in this country all by myself, but the fact that I cannot go back whenever I want is a new feeling that I didn’t experience before. I’m happy that my family is doing well. But if something happens to them, I cannot see or help them. The big lockdown in Italy is much harder to handle for everybody than we experience in The Netherlands. Especially mentally. Luckily, we can and do stay in close contact via video calls.

How does your work for OnePlanet connect to COVID-19 pandemic?

My team is exploring some possibilities to develop or get involved in COVID-19 related solutions. Of course, it would be great if we can put our expertise to work to contribute to solutions. However, the projects we work on are future innovations that take months, usually even years to have an outcome. That’s why I’m not working on COVID-19 related topics right now, but the projects I’m working on do focus mainly on healthcare. The team is also looking into how the technologies that we are currently developing can contribute to initiatives in the Netherlands and beyond.

You’ve told us that working for OnePlanet Research Center was something you really wanted to do. What was your motivation for that exactly?

The ambition of OnePlanet was what attracted my attention from the first moment I’ve heard about it. From a personal perspective I like to work on projects that aim at having a positive impact on people and planet. I recognize the crisis’s in the world like overpopulation, malnutrition and limited resources of our planet. OnePlanet is trying to find solutions to deal with this. You can imagine that I really like that idea. Working at a research center that’s actually caring about it is what motivates me every day.

What if… you could make a futuristic change/development, what would it be?

I think we’ve thought for too long about the future of the world as a sci-fi scenario, with tall buildings everywhere, flying cars, and not much green spaces. I think our earth is giving us signals that the way we are doing at the moment is not acceptable. Therefore we need to take some steps back and re-think what we can do better and focus more on our environment.

What if… there is a possibility to integrate technical innovations to make the world more sustainable, consuming, eating, and thinking consciously?

I think that’s possible. We have to grow together, because we are one with the planet. We are one integrated organism. If the planet is not doing well, we are not doing well, and the other way around. It is also a responsibility of people working in cutting edge research to not forget about this and to help the population gain awareness, providing information and meaningful innovations. We are doing our best!

Interested in working at OnePlanet Research Center?

We have multiple job openings to expand our OnePlanet team in Gelderland. Check out the job openings here.