Members Family Lab

    Prof. dr. Ann Buysse Joke Vandamme Isabelle Deryckere
    Prof. dr. Lesley Verhofstadt Marieke Van Schoors Inse Van Melkebeke
    Prof. dr. Alexis Dewaele Céline Hinnekens Krista Vanderstraeten
    dr. Hanna Van Parys Mojca Filipic Sterle
    dr. Olivia De Smet Thibaut Demeyere
    dr. Sabine Hellemans Charlotte Pylyser
    Juri Krivzov
    Liza Notaerts
    Kristof Vandael

    ZAP-members

    Prof. dr. Ann BuysseProf. dr. Ann Buysse

     

    Description

    Ann Buysse is professor at the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at Ghent University, where she works at the Department of Experimental-Clinical and Health Psychology and were she is head of the research group of Family Psychology (Family Lab).

    She is co-organizer and trainer of the Postgraduate Training Program in Mediation at Ghent University. 

    As a researcher, she has a broad expertise in qualitative and quantitative research, interdisciplinary research and fundamental outcome/process research and methodological research in the field of family psychology. Recently she was chief promoter of two interdisciplinary, inter-university research projects on divorce in Flanders (i.e., IPOS (externe link)) and sexual health in Flanders (i.e., Sexpert). Currently she is co-promoter of the GOA-research project on social and genetic parenthood (i.e., Parenthood Research team) and co-principal investigator of an interdisciplinary, inter-university research project into new processes samengstelde families (FittiF).

     

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      Prof. dr. Lesley VerhofstadtProf. dr. Lesley Verhofstadt

      Description

      Lesley Verhofstadt conducts and supervises research that increases the scientific understanding of couple/family (dys)functioning, thereby contributing to preventive and therapeutic interventions that are aimed to alleviate the distress of couples, families, and their members. She therefore developed research programs on two main topics:

      1. Behavioral, emotional, and cognitive processes underlying relationship dissatisfaction in couples. More specifically:

        • Psychological needs frustration and emotion regulation
        • Deficits in everyday mind-reading accuracy
        • Deficits in dyadic coping/support provision
        • Conflict management

        2. Family stress and coping

        This research is centered around the question why the strains and challenges of major life events bring some families closer together and break other families apart. Research is conducted within families confronted with

        • Pediatric cancer
        • Expatriate assignment
        • Imprisonment

        As a member of editorial boards of journals for practitioners (Systeemtherapie, Tijdschrift voor Klinische Psychologie) she is strongly committed to facilitate the translation of findings from fundamental couple/family research for practitioners. She furthermore serves as the representative of the sector Research & Education in the Belgian Commission of Psychologists and as a board member of the Belgische Vereniging voor Relatietherapie, Gezinstherapie en Systeemcounseling. She teaches courses on Couple & Family Studies, Couple & Family Therapy, and Counseling Skills, and works as a staff member and trainer within the Postgraduate Training Program in Couple, Family, and Systemic Psychotherapy at Ghent University.

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          Prof. dr. Alexis DewaeleProf. dr. Alexis Dewaele

          Description

          My research interests are focused on the study of sexual minorities (in casu lesbian women, gay men, and bisexual men and women), research methods, and evidence-based policy and practice.

          Currently I am coordinating PSYNC, a research consortium within the field of clinical psychology. Within PSYNC, I specifically focus on working with different groups of stakeholders (policy actors, researchers, practitioners,…) and on valorization (all things related to the translation of research results into products as well as science communication).

          Recent studies:

          • The relationship between social network composition, sexual identities, and behavioral choices
          • Minority stress and (mental) health
          • Comparing online and offline survey methods
          • The relationship between visibility management as a coping strategy and the experience of stress
          • Characteristics of the sexual debut in gay and bisexual adolescents and young adults.

          My current research is part of a multidisciplinary large scale quantitative project on sexual health in Flanders ((i.e. Sexpert).

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          dr. Hanna Van ParysHanna Van Parys

          Description

          My current research interests include family communication and family relationships in gamete donation families, stepfathers experiences in reconstituted families, and clients’ experiences in couples therapy. I am part of the Parenthood Research team, carrying out a multidisciplinary qualitative project combining ethical, medical and psychological viewpoints on the use of assisted reproductive technologies.

          In 2012, I received my PhD in Psychology from the University of Leuven. The title of my doctoral thesis was ‘Exploring parentification: Children’s experiences of growing up with a depressed parent.’

          From a methodological point of view, I am interested in qualitative research methods, and how these methods can be modified in order to be suitable for the study of family relationships. Methods such as Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, Dyadic Interview Analysis, and Microanalysis, have been implemented in my current and previous research.

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          dr. Olivia De SmetOlivia De Smet

          Description

          As a researcher, I am interested in ‘the dark side of close relationships’. I specifically focus on examining privacy-violating behaviors (i.e., unwanted pursuit behavior and stalking) and intimate partner violence in samples of ex-partners and partners.

          During my PhD, I was affiliated to a multidisciplinary large-scale project on divorce in Flanders (i.e., IPOS). In that context, I conducted explanatory research on the perpetration of privacy-violating behaviors among ex-partners.

          From a systemic point of view, I currently investigate privacy-violating behaviors as well as intimate partner violence within intact couples. These studies include a variety of individual and relational variables and make use of student, general as well as clinical samples of couples.

          Doing fundamental research, I gained expertise in (large-scale) surveys, dyadic data-analysis, the actor-partner interdependence model, and non-parametric statistics (especially count regression).

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          dr. Sabine HellemansDr. Sabine Hellemans

          Description

          My research interests focus on intimate partner violence (IPV) and alternative conflict resolution strategies.

          1. My doctoral dissertation was part of a multidisciplinary large scale quantitative project on sexual health in Flanders (i.e., Sexpert). In that context, I investigated the prevalence of IPV among Flemish heterosexuals, among Flemish sexual minorities and among members of the Turkish ethnic minority population in Flanders. In addition, I explored how lifetime IPV victimization affects’ victims current physical, mental, relational and sexual well-being.
          2. My current research focuses on mediation at school. Conflict is inherent to human relationships and appears everywhere. Also at school small and big problems and conflicts occur. In this research, we aim to change the familiarity and mentality towards alternative conflict resolution strategies in the school environment. If people become more familiar with the different ways to cope with conflict, they will be able to make a deliberately choice about the best way to a solution. This research is part of a multidisciplinary large scale quantitative project on family transitions in Flanders (i.e., FittiF).

          Besides my job as a researcher, I work part-time as a clinical psychologist in the Center for Medical Genetics Ghent (UZ Gent) and I follow a course partner relationship-, family-, and systemic therapy (UGent).

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            Joke VandammeJoke Vandamme

            Description

            My research interests concerns systemic-psychological research on reproductive health. My current research project focuses on couples who are being confronted with an unexpected reproductive situation. The aim of the project is to investigate how couples deal with this situation in terms of decision-making and coping.

            Three samples are being investigated:

            • Women/couples who are confronted with an unintended pregnancy and seek an induced abortion
            • Couples who are confronted with an unintended pregnancy and plan to carry the pregnancy to term
            • Couples who are experiencing fertility problems and plan an IVF treatment

            I make use of prospective study designs (e.g. diary studies) and dyadic data.

            In 2011-2013, I was a member of the multidisciplinary Sexpert team (Sexpert). Prior to that, I worked on a study about the value of pre-abortion counseling sessions in Flanders.

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            Marieke Van SchoorsMarieke Van Schoors

            Description

            My research focuses on the impact of child cancer on families and their individual members (ill child, parents and siblings). Specifically, I examine:

            • The long- and short-term effects of child cancer on families and their members
            • The factors that may help families and their members to recover from crisis and to adapt to the stressful circumstances resulting from child cancer
            • Parents' and siblings' experience of the diagnosis, treatment and consequences for the family life

            In order to fully capture how child cancer affects each of the family members, a multi-method (questionnaires, interviews) and multi-informant approach is used.

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            Céline HinnekensCéline Hinnekens

            Description

            I am studying everyday mind-reading (=empathic accuracy) in couples. More specifically, I aim to investigate:

            • Deficits in empathic accuracy in distressed couples
            • The role of motivation in distressed couples' empathic inaccuracy
            • Self-threat as primary motivator of distressed couples' empathic inaccuracy

            A combination of questionnaires, videotaped conflict resolution tasks, and empathic accuracy paradigms are used.

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            Mojca Filipic SterleMojca Filipic Sterle

            Description

            My research focuses on adaptation processes within expatriate families who moved to Belgium because of a work assignment. Specifically, I examine:

            • The amount of individual/family crisis resulting from expatriate assignment
            • The development of the family's number of stressors, resources, and stressor perception over time
            • How these variables interact to predict the family's level of adaptation
            • Which specific elements are helpful in psychological interventions (Relational Family Therapy) with expatriate families.

            This research is conducted within:

            • A large convenience sample of families
            • A small sample of clinically distressed expatriate individuals/families

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            Thibaut DemeyereThibaut Demyere

            Description

            My research focuses on alternative conflict resolution. Specifically, I study:

            • how a trajectory mediation program affects family members' feelings of control, autonomy and self-determination in making the decision for the trajectory by which they will resolve their family conflict.
            • what affects different conflict resolution trajectories (litigating, mediation, amicable settlement, negotiation…) have on the quality of relationships and the quality of life of family members who resolve their family conflicts using these different trajectories.
            • to what extent a mediation program at schools affects pupils', teachers' and parents' attitudes towards alternative conflict resolution.

            My current research is part of a multidisciplinary large scale project on family transitions in Flanders (i.e. Families in transition, transition in Families; FittiF).

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            Charlotte PylyserCharlotte Pylyser

            Description

            My research focuses on how stepfamily relations are created, maintained and altered. More specifically, I aim to study two family processes - influence and mattering - and how these processes develop over time and how they contribute to the quality of life of the stepfamily members.

            In order to fully capture those family dynamics, a round-robin design in which all stepfamily members report on their relationship with all other participating members at three occasions over time will be used.

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            Juri Krivzov

            DescriptionJuri Krivzov

            Currently I am working on the Single Case Archive.

            My research interests concern somatoform disorders, psychoanalytic and psychodynamic psychotherapy. I am also interested in the connection between the Embodied Cognition perspective and psychopathology. Methodologically, I am interested in qualitative and single case research.

            Previously I worked as a clinical psychologist and psychosomatic pain counselor at the Theodor Fliedner Krankenhaus in Ratingen, Germany.  My master thesis from Radboud University Nijmegen  deals with the circumstances of symptom onset in gastric psychosomatic disorders. 

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            Liza NotaertsLiza Notaerts

            Description

            My research interests focus on the Science-Practicioner Gap, Evidence-Based Practice, as well as on the methodology behind Single Case Research .


            Currently I am part of the Single Case Archive Network, where I work on expanding and developing the single case database.
            My previous research focused on alternative conflict resolution strategies and mediation in a school environment, and it was part of a multidisciplinary large scale quantitative project on family transitions in Flanders (i.e. Families in transition, transition in Families; FittiF).

             Besides my job as a researcher, I work as well part-time as a clinical psychologist in a private practice.

             

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            Kristof VandaelKristof Vandael

            Description

            My research concerns valorisation of scientific research. I am interested in co-creation in a ‘quadruple helix setting’ (social, academic, business and government partners) as a means of increasing the impact of research in social sciences and humanities. To study co-creation, I mainly use qualitative research methods. This research is part of the EU project ACCOMPLISSH.

            I am also part of the ‘Citizen Science’ research. This is a large-scale survey (using video interviews) on the (possible) role of university in global societal challenges. Again, I mainly use qualitative methods for this research.

             

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            Teaching staff

            Isabelle DeryckereIsabelle Deryckere

            Description

            I am a clinical psychologist with specialisation in gestalttherapy (Instituut voor communicatie, Kortrijk) and systemic therapy (Interactie Academie, Antwerpen). Beside my job as a practice assistent in the Psychology Master Education, I work as a psychotherapist in a group practice (Psypraktijk-Gent) and as clinical psychologist in elderly psychiatry in OLV Ziekenhuis Brugge.

            My Former work experiences were in different clinical settings: psychiatry, rehabilitation, (mentally) disabled persons, internment, cardiac revalidating, victim support. I have former educational experience as a freelance trainer in systemic psychotherapy and as a (practice) lector in the field of Social Work and Ergotherapy at HOWEST.

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            Inse Van Melkebeke

            Inse Van Melkebeke

            Description

            Being a clinical psychologist/sexologist, I am interested in the psychological and sexual development of children and adults. My special interest focuses on attachment strategies and the effects on (sexual) relationships.

            I am also interested in issues related to mental and sexual health, sexual identity and -orientation, sexual problems, violence and trauma. I combine working at a group practice as psychotherapist-sexologist with working with sex offenders in a forensic team in Ghent. I'm also supervisor in the clinical sexology training program.

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            Krista Vanderstraeten

            Krista Vanderstraeten

            Description

            A few years after finishing my study in clinical psychology at the university of Ghent, I specialised in systemic therapy at the Interactie Academie  in Antwerp.

            My main focus has been on treating clients with substance abuse related problems.

             Currently I combine three jobs:

            • practice assistent
            • psychotherapist in the group practice Spreek-kuur
            • psychotherapist in PTC Rustenburg where I work with dual diagnosis patients

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