I am professor of Health Education and Health Promotion and the chair of the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Maastricht University, since 2000. I was trained as a social psychologist and worked in Groningen and Amsterdam. My research now focuses on theoretical bases of health promotion, attitude-behavior models, non-intentional behaviour, innovation theory and the development and evaluation of interventions in public health, with a special focus on nutrition and physical activity.
In terms of applied projects, I am involved in the role of public information about hereditary factors in health and disease, cancer screening, prevention of mental health problems, self-management of diabetic patients, community interventions, and school health promotion. At present I am associate editor of the Dutch Journal of Medicine and a member of the editorial board of Psychology and Health. In addition, I serve on several research committees of NWO, ZonMW, and the Dutch Foundation for STI and AIDS, and I am member of the board of the Academic Centre for Public Health in Limburg, the Foundation for Scientific Research of the Dutch Association of Health Promotion, and the Dutch Foundation of Mental Health. I chair the National Conference on Public Health and the Foundation DIEP, which supports the self-management of persons with chronic disease.