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Joost Dekker is Professor emeritus of Allied Health Care at the Department of Psychiatry and the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Amsterdam University Medical Centers, Amsterdam, the Netherlands (1997- present). He is Adjunct Professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong; and ‘dosent’ at the Faculty of Sports and Health Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

Joost Dekker (1951, Doetinchem, the Netherlands) received a BSc in chemistry (Utrecht, 1973, cum laude) and MSc in psychology (Utrecht, 1980). He obtained his PhD in 1988 (Utrecht, cum laude). He was senior researcher at the WHO Collaborating Center on Quality of Life in Relation to Health Care, Amsterdam (1987-1988); senior researcher and subsequently head of research department at the Netherlands Institute of Primary Health Care, Utrecht (1988- 2001); director of Institute of Health and Welfare Studies, Amsterdam (2001- 2007); and Distinguished Professor, Jining Medical University, Jining, China (2015 – 2017).

His research concerns exercise, emotions and meaning in somatic disease (specifically, musculoskeletal disorders, cancer and neurological disorders). He obtained grants from numerous agencies. He is (co)author of more than 500 international and more than 190 national scientific publications. He supervised 49 successfully defended PhD theses.

He is a former President of the International Society of Behavioral Medicine, as well as Treasurer, Member of Governing Council, and chair of various committees. He performs editorial services for a wide range of scientific journals and is past Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Behavioral Medicine. He is involved in international and national boards and committees. He contributed to the organization of numerous international and national conferences. He has received several international and national honors and awards.


  • Exercise, emotions and meaning in somatic disease

  • Focusing on musculoskeletal disorders, cancer and neurological disorders.

  • Clinimetrics. 

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