Main Research Projects

Monitoring resilience mechanisms in daily life

Optimal mental well-being is a beneficial building block that helps to bounce back from adversity. However, we do not know how and under what conditions resilience mechanisms function within individuals, and how these mechanisms take form in daily life. In this project, a mobile application (App) is developed to be able to perform experience sampling studies and intensively monitor individuals behavior, activities, thoughts and feelings within daily life. A first study using this app examines if self-compassion as a potential positive emotion regulation strategy helps to bounce back from stressful daily hassles and thereby increases moment-to-moment resilience.

Financier

IGS Research Institute, University of Twente

Researcher

Hester Trompetter

Year

2014 – 2015

Contact

Hester Trompetter

How can we support partners of cancer patients?

Partners of cancer patients often suffer from distress. Effective interventions, specifically and solely targeting this population, are scarce. In my PhD-project I developed the web-based self-help intervention ‘Hold on, for each other’ (www.houvastvoorelkaar.nl). This intervention aims at reducing distress and improving resilience and mental health in partners of cancer patients. To make sure the intervention fits the users’ needs, they were actively involved in the development. Currently, our intervention is being tested in an RCT. If proven to be effective, the intervention -based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy- can be an invaluable contribution to the healthcare system.

Financier

KWF

Partner

VUMC

Researchers

Nadine Kohle

Stans Drossaert

Irma Verdonck

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Year

2014 – 2017

Contact

Positive technology: What is the added value of gamification?

Although it is speculated that gamification may contribute to improved adherence and effectiveness of eHealth interventions, empirical evidence is lacking. A randomised controlled trial will be conducted in a general population sample to examine the effectiveness of the eHealth intervention ‘This is your life’ in terms of well-being and resilience, as well as to explore the added value of gamification. In a second experimental study, we will compare the direct effects of the gamified intervention versus the non-gamified intervention on emotions, scope of attention and flow, hereby providing insight into the direct influence of the design of the intervention.

Financier

Institute for Innovation and Governance Studies (IGS)

Researchers

Saskia Kelders

Marion Spijkerman

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Year

2015 – 2016

Contact

Saskia Kelders

Positive Educative Programme: Helping children flourish

The primary school is an important context that contributes to the development of children. The Positive Educative Programme(PEP) uses this context to help children flourish, by improving the school and class climate through stimulating positive emotions, resilience and character strengths at a whole school level. The PEP aims to improve well-being in individual children and at the whole school, and to reduce behavioral problems and bullying. In this project, the Positive Educative Programme will be evaluated and improved in a pilot and larger effect study.

Financier

Fonds Kinderpostzegels / Consent

Partner

Consent

Researchers

Teuntje Elfrink

Aleisha Clarke

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Karlein Schreurs

Year

2015 – 2016

Contact

Empowering Parents, Strengthening Schools

Empowering Parents, Strengthening Schools is a two year programme of research that aims to develop an evidence-based resource that brings together parents of children in primary school and their teachers to support their social and emotional development. The online resource will provide tools and strategies to (i) develop a shared understanding and common language around social and emotional wellbeing (ii) train school staff in communicating effectively with parents (iii) facilitate parental access to information that assists them in supporting their children's social and emotional development.

The programme of research will be carried out by Dr Aleisha Clarke from the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Health Promotion Research at the National University of Ireland Galway. Dr Clarke was recently successful in obtaining a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship. As part of her fellowship, Aleisha will work alongside Prof Ernst Bohlmeijer and researchers at the Department of Psychology, Health and Technology and the Centre for eHealth Research and Disease Management in the development and piloting of this online resource with primary schools in Twente.

Financier

Marie-Curie Program, European Commission

Partner

Consent

Researchers

Aleisha Clarke

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Year

2015 - 2017

Contact

The Happiness Route – a way to improved well-being for lonely people

We are currently conducting a randomized controlled trial on the effects of a positive psychology intervention for vulnerable people, the Happiness Route. Lonely people with severe health problems and a low socio-economic status are guided in finding their passion and act on it. As a nudge towards activation, they can spend up to 500€ for an activity they are passionate about. We found that the feeling of connectedness, autonomy and competence increase. We will examine if the happiness-based approach is more effective than the traditional problem-based approach in terms of well-being, resilience and health care consumption.

Financier

ZonMw

Partner

Arcon

Researchers

Laura Weiss, PhD

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Gerben Westerhof

Year

2013 - 2016

Contact

Cultivating well-being and flourishing in the general population

The purpose of this RCT study is to evaluate the (cost-)efficacy of the comprehensive self-help book “This is your life” with tailored email support on well-being, and to determine the working mechanisms underlying the intervention. These possible working mechanisms are positive emotion, use of strengths, optimism, self-compassion, resilience and positive relations. Participants with low or moderate levels of well-being and without moderate or severe clinical symptomatology are recruited. This study will add knowledge to the efficacy of multicomponent positive psychology interventions. If proven effective, our results will be especially relevant for public mental health services, governments and primary care.

Partner

Trimbos Institute

Researchers

Marijke Schotanus-Dijkstra

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Stans Drossaert

Marcel Pieterse

Jan Walburg

Year

2014 - 2016

Contact

The impact of an online intervention on post-operative-recovery

Many people suffer from mild to severe pain, after surgical treatment. Few evidence-based psychological interventions focusing on (acute) pain are available. Main aim of the research is to develop and evaluate an online guided intervention (self-help program) based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). The patients will start with the intervention in the weeks before the operation and continue to use it in the weeks after the operation. We expect that the intervention will have a positive impact on recovery, well-being and work engagement in comparison to a care-as-usual treatment condition.

Financier

Saxion University of Applied Sciences & University of Twente

Partner

OCON (Orthopedic Centre Eastern part of the Netherlands) & MST (Hospital Enschede)

Researchers

Annemieke van der Horst

Karlein Schreurs

Hester Trompetter

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Hilde de Vocht (Saxion)

Year

2015 - 2019

Contact

Being well recovered – Should we rethink about how to define and measure recovery

People who suffered from a mental disorder suggest that improving well-being (emotional, psychological and social) is a core aspect of the recovery process. Medical and scientific definitions on recovery from a mental disorder however, are mainly focused on reducing psychopathology. This study aims to understand how psychopathology and well-being relate to each other during the process of recovery. This will be studied by measuring both aspects in a longitudinal design among eating disorder patients who are treated by the Human Concern Foundation.

Partner

Human Concern Foundation

Researchers

Sander Vos

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Gerben Westerhof

Year

2015 - 2019

Contact

Well-being in mental health care: The validation of the two-continua model of psychopathology and positive mental health in the clinical population

In contemporary mental health care the Medical Model is overpowering, which results in reductionism and professionals treating psychiatric patients with the purpose of decreasing psychiatric complaints. There is little interest for enhancing the positive mental health and well-being even though studies have shown the relevance of well-being in addition to psychopathology both empirically and from a patient perspective. This research aims to study the relation between and treatment effects on both psychopathology and well-being in a broad range of psychiatric patients by longitudinally following individual patients in the mental health care institution GGNet.

Partner

GGNet

Researchers

Katinka Franken

Sanne Lamers

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Gerben Westerhof

Year

2015 - 2019

Contact

The nursing home as a community – using the self-determination theory to improve wellbeing of older residents

This project aims to improve the subjective wellbeing of nursing home residents. Well-being of older persons has been found to be related to the fulfillment of the need for relatedness, autonomy and competence. We examine whether well-being of the residents can be increased through higher fulfillment of these needs. Health care professionals are offered courses aimed at (1) paying attention to their own well-being, (2) becoming more aware of the wellbeing and psychological needs of the residents, and (3) trying to improve fulfillment during their daily contacts with the residents. Finally, (4) relatives and friends of the residents will be involved in this project.

Partner

Zorggroep Sint Maarten

Researchers

Noortje Kloos

Sanne Lamers

Gerben Westerhof

Ernst Bohlmeijer

Year

2014 - 2018

Contact