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Lectorate Public Care and Prevention for Youth

The lectorate consists of three research programmes. These programmes are constructed and directed in close collaboration with Professor Dr Pol van Lier, professor of Developmental Psychopathology at the VU University.

About the lectorate

Now that the national government is shifting responsibility for youth care to the municipalities, the city of Rotterdam is facing radical changes. Cooperating institutions must put the emphasis in their guidance, treatment and care on an integrated approach, prevention, early support and strengthening the personal capabilities of young people and families.

The lectorate develops and improves professionalisation programmes for education and care professionals (in training) by means of practice-based impact research. To this end, the research group works closely together with institutions from the professional and educational practice and with other knowledge institutes.


Young people with care needs are often dependent on several institutions and professional groups. Research into the effectiveness of the programmes that education and care professionals offer to young people, and research into what knowledge, skills and attitudes this requires from professionals, are therefore important. These professionals each have their own background and knowledge and differ, for example, in the extent to which they work with evidence-based guidelines. This makes coherent, effective care more difficult. Even about elementary questions there is insufficient information: to what extent do young people complete their care trajectory, are they satisfied, have the goals been achieved and have problems diminished? More research is also needed into so-called therapeutic factors such as the quality of the working relationship between young people and professionals and the extent to which they agree on the chosen treatment route. 

The research of the lectorate should contribute to a better life course perspective for Rotterdam’s youth and optimise the training of education and care professionals. 


Yulius Academy and Yulius Education, Horizon Education and Youth Care, BOOR Foundation, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus MC/Sophia Children's Hospital, VU Amsterdam.

Yulius Academy and Yulius Education, Horizon Education and Youth Care, BOOR Foundation, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus MC/Sophia Children's HospitalVU Amsterdam.

Research programmes

of the lectorate

Happy Friends, Positive Minds

The first research programme, Happy Friends, Positive Minds, focuses on more fundamental experimental research into the prevention of co-rumination within friendships between girls in late childhood and early adolescence. This study is funded by the Nationaal Regieorgaan Onderwijsonderzoek, SIA KIEM, the NWO Promotion Scholarship for Teachers and Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences.

Socio-emotional development of young children

Within the second research programme, Socio-emotional development of young children, applied experimental research is being used to develop a coaching method for teachers, which consists of a combination of various innovative Image Coaching variants. With this coaching, teachers can be better trained in the future to preventively strengthen the socio-emotional competences of young children with externalising behavioural problems within their regular classroom management. This study is financed by the Nationaal Regieorgaan Onderwijsonderzoek and the NWO Promotion Scholarship for Teachers.


Within the third research programme, A.L.I.B.I., with the help of a combination of fundamental and applied experimental research, is used to develop the serious game A.L.I.B.I. and a related implementation programme for schools. A.L.I.B.I. is intended for children who have a history of negative social experiences in primary school, and who are at great risk of not being able to develop positive social relationships again in secondary school. By working with A.L.I.B.I. in group 8, children develop their social mindfulness skills and build up self-confidence. This study is funded by the European Research Council (ERC). Lecturers and PhD students from the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences work on the first two research programmes.

"20 percent of Rotterdam youth between 0 and 23 need extra attention and care."

Patricia Vuijk professor in Public Care and Prevention for Youth