Welcome to Hotel Elsevier: you can check-out any time you like … not

In December 2021, Robin Kok wrote a series of tweets about his Elsevier data access request. I did the same a few days later. This here is the resulting collaborative blog post, summarizing our journey in trying to understand what data Elsevier collects; what data Elsevier has collected on us two specifically; and trying to… Read more »

Award for transformative early career contributions

About a year ago, the Association for Psychological Science awarded me with the Janet Taylor Spence Award for transformative early career contributions to psychological science. Given that I often move on too quickly into the next big thing rather than taking stock a little when good things happen, I wanted to write a short blog… Read more »

Treating depression with psychedelics: red flags and FAQ

Update, 02/2024: We have now published the paper “History repeating: guidelines to address common problems in psychedelic science” on this topic, in part based on this blog post. We introduces 10 pressing challenges that limit conclusions regarding safety and efficacy. We share a checklist that researchers, journalists, funders, policymakers, and other stakeholders can use to… Read more »

Creating basic psychometric summaries in R

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We just finished collecting the first cohort of the WARN-D study, our ambitious effort to create a personalized early warning system for depression. In the 90 minute self report survey, we try to get at many of the most relevant predicators for depression onset. Creating this battery took us many months, and involved a delphi… Read more »

Systems not syndromes

Studying mental disorders as systems, not syndromes

Update: the paper is now published in Current Directions in Psychological Science; you can find my summary of the paper on Twitter. I’ve written a very brief piece on embracing the complexity of mental health problems, entitled “Studying mental disorders as systems, not syndromes” (download). I also had the opportunity to give a keynote on… Read more »

Schmeasurement: DSM-5 symptom measure edition

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For our new WARN-D research project on building a personalized early warning system for depression, I recently looked into openly available, transdiagnostic, self-report mental health screeners. The most common recommendation was to use the DSM-5 Self-Rated Level 1 Cross-Cutting Symptom Measure (Adult). This measure was released by the American Psychiatric Association (APA) — the organization… Read more »

1 minute science communication video .. only using legos

Young Academy Leiden challenged its members—including yours truly—to make a video about an upcoming research project, with two constraints. First, we only have one minute to communicate our idea. Second, as toolkit, we can only use LEGOs from the ‘creative suitcase’ we all received, a small box of LEGOs. Here’s my short video, about my… Read more »

Models and theories

On Theory

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What is a good theory, and what is a bad one? In this blog, I’ll introduce theories, models, phenomena, data, and how they relate to each other. I’ll explain what Paul Meehl, the hypothetico-deductive framework, and the open science reform have in common, and why proposed solutions to problems in our field have largely ignored… Read more »

Modeling idiographic and nomothetic dynamics of 255 depressed inpatients

Led by the first author Kaat Hebbrecht, we published an open access paper a few days ago on “Understanding personalized dynamics to inform precision medicine: a dynamic time warp analysis of 255 depressed inpatients” in BMC Medicine. You can find the full text here. I briefly summarize the paper in this blog post, given that… Read more »

ERC Starting Grant on predicting depression onset

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I’m extremely happy, proud, humbled, and somewhat nervous announce that my application for an European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant was successful (on my first try!), following the announcement by the ERC today. The ERC Starting Grant is part of EU’s Research and Innovation programme, called Horizon 2020. The scheme was quite competitive this year,… Read more »

Measuring depression outcomes that matter to patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals

Our team led by the brilliant Astrid Chevance just published a new paper, entitled “Identifying outcomes for depression that matter to patients, informal caregivers and healthcare professionals: qualitative content analysis of a large international online survey”. The paper is online in Lancet Psychiatry. Rationale When it comes to measuring outcomes in clinical studies of depression,… Read more »

Ecological momentary assessment: app vs web tools?

This is going to be a very brief post, given my current time constraints. We are setting up a large Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) study. I have some experience with EMA from running studies myself (e.g. on student mental health during COVID19) and collaborations, but the field is growing rapidly, and so we spent some… Read more »

COVID-19 pandemic and student mental health

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The goal of this blog post is to summarize our recent study on COVID-19 and student mental health, and do a bit of science translation of our core findings. You can find the paper accepted in Clinical Psychological Science here, and all data, code, measures, codebooks, and all other relevant material here. Click on the… Read more »