“There’s no shortage of care available in the Netherlands for people with acquired brain injury, but in practice it doesn’t always reach the right patient at the right time”, says Professor Caroline van Heugten. “Especially patients who are affected less in a directly visible way and more at the level of cognitive, emotional and social functioning.” Van Heugten is one of the founders of the Limburg Brain Injury Center.


Our failing memory

In Mind
Friday, 17 March 2017 12:02

A memory that does not seem to coincide with reality is innocent enough in everyday life. Indeed, we all experience blind spots in our memory every day that we fill in with what probably happened. But in court, it is important to get the facts straight. That is why Dr Henry Otgaar of Maastricht University examines how memories are formed, influenced and can even be completely made up.


A new institute is aiming to enhance the participation of people with occupational disabilities in the labour market. The Inclusive Labour Organisation Expertise Centre (CIAO), launched by Maastricht University in September 2016, will make insights from research available to companies, governments and social organisations. “Many people have trouble finding a job independently. We want to help as many as possible into work”, says Fred Zijlstra, UM professor of Labour and Organisational Psychology and director of CIAO. “Nobody in our society deserves to be sidelined.”


Scientist of lying

In Mind
Wednesday, 16 November 2016 12:59

Fraud, scamming, false witnesses. Sophie van der Zee, who does cutting-edge research on dishonest behaviour and automatic lie detection, has been affiliated with several UK universities as well as the TNO Knowledge Institute. But it was Maastricht University’s Master in Psychology and Law that laid the foundation for her multifaceted career. “My love of academia was born here.”


Making the invisible visible

In Mind
Friday, 17 June 2016 10:21

Before you start reading this article, take a short pause and have a look around the room. What do you see? Whether it’s a table, chairs, trees outside the window, or the traffic rushing by - your ability to perceive the outside world seems utterly self-evident. Yet have you ever wondered how our sense of sight, one of the most important senses we have, actually works? The PhD research of Thomas Emmerling brings us one step closer to unraveling the mysteries of visual perception and visual mental imagery.


Ethnic outsiders at risk of psychosis

In Mind
Wednesday, 20 April 2016 08:36

Remarkable: the risk of psychosis among young Dutch-Moroccan men is five times higher than that of Dutch-Moroccan women. Psychologist Els van der Ven looked to behaviour and the social environment to find an explanation, and she found that the cause is social exclusion. Her recommendations: more validating interventions to prevent people from becoming lonely. “Key figures within the community need to learn to recognise feelings of failure and alienation.”


“I enjoy problems I don’t understand”

In Mind
Thursday, 11 February 2016 00:00

Given the opportunity to trade in Tilburg for Maastricht University (UM), she said ‘yes’ in a heartbeat. “Think on it? What does that mean? Taking a walk in the woods to do some soul-searching? That’s not my style. I make decisions quickly and rarely regret them afterwards. We all like to pretend we make rational, conscious decisions, but we should have faith in our subconscious.”


Non-invasive brain stimulation: miracle or hype?

In Mind
Thursday, 15 October 2015 14:30

The clinical potential of non-invasive brain stimulation seems to be almost unlimited. But with few applications having been thoroughly tested, the expectations are too high. Research is now set to begin on the effects of brain stimulation on cognitive rehabilitation after a stroke. The study is a unique collaboration between Teresa Schuhmann of Maastricht University (UM) and Sascha Rasquin from the Adalante-Zorggroep rehabilitation centre. “The interaction between fundamental research and clinical treatment is a win-win situation.”


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