Universiteit Leiden

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Philip Spinhoven

Scientific Director / Professor of Clinical Psychology

Prof.dr. P. Spinhoven
+31 71 527 3377

Short CV

  • Scientific director Institute of Psychology (from 2018 onwards)
  • Professor of Clinical Psychology, Institute of Psychology and Department of Psychiatry, Leiden University (from 1998 onwards)
  • Dean Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (2008-2012)
  • Scientific director Institute of Psychology (2007)
  • Associate professor, Department of Psychiatry, Leiden University Medical Center (1991-1998)
  • Assistant professor, Department of Psychiatry, Leiden University Medical Center (1981-1991)
  • PhD at Leiden University (1989)
  • Master degree Clinical Psychology, Leiden University (1981)


My research focuses on how distant, recent and current stressors interact with cognitive processes (e.g., attention, memory, thought, reasoning), behavioural processes (e.g., approach and avoidance), and biological processes (e.g., HPA-axis). My focus is on anxiety disorders, mood disorders, somatoform disorders and personality disorders. My aim is to understand the complex interplay among cognitive, behavioural and biological processes across these four stress-related disorders. These disorders show a high co-morbidity, similarities in known causative and maintaining factors and in preferred psychological and pharmacological treatments. My research draws on multiple methodologies (e.g., laboratory cognitive tasks, clinical trials, survey methodology), as well as cognitive and information processing theories. My overarching aim is to conduct translational research in which basis knowledge about determinants of psychopathology is translated into evidence-based transdiagnostic preventive and curative interventions.

Supervised PhD candidates


  • A. Krause: The influence of dissociation on emotional distractibility in Borderline Personality Disorder: A neuroimaging approach, 16 november (with B. Elzinga)
  • B. Busscher: Subjective and physiological reactivity to flight in people with fear of flying. Leiden, 7 september (with E. de Geus (VU))
  • D. Enter: Dare to approach. Effects of testosterone on avoidance in social anxiety. Nijmegen (with: K. Roelofs)
  • M.J. Huijbers: Meditation or medication. Preventing relapse in recurrent depression. Nijmegen (with: A.E.M. Speckens)
  • M.L. van Orden: ). Collaborative mental health care. Changing the landscape of mental health care. Leiden (with E. Hoencamp & P.M.J. Haffmans)


  • M. Koenders: Tangled up in mood. Predicting the disease course of bipolar disorder (with: B.M. Elzinga)
  • M. Brom: The role of incentive learning and cognitive regulation in sexual arousal. (with: J.B.M.Z. Trimbos)
  • J.J. Aardoom: E-mental health for eating disorders  (with: E.F. van Furth and A.E. Dingemans)
  • M. Spaans: Personality pathology in a forensic setting (with: E. de Beurs)


  • J. Drost: Worry and rumination. Underlying processes and transdiagnostic characteristics. (With: A.J.W. van der Does)
  • M.L. Molendijk: The role of BDNF in depression. Will the neurotrophin hypothesis sparkle on, long after the glitter of the firework is gone. (With: B.M. Elzinga, and B.W.J.H. Penninx)


  • A.L. van Harmelen: Childhood emotional maltreatment: Impact on cognition and the brain. (With: B.M. Elzinga and B.W.J.H. Penninx)
  • A.D.T. Muntingh: Cost-effectiveness of a collaborative stepped care intervention for anxiety disorders in the primary care setting. (With: C. van der Feltz-Cornelis, A.J.L.M. van Balkom and H. van Marwijk)


  • T.M. van den Boogaard: The negotiated approach in the treatment of depressive disorders: The impact on patient-treatment compatibility and outcome. (With: R. Van Dyck and H. Vertommen.) 
  • K. de Jong: A chance for change: Building an outcome monitoring feedback system for outpatient mental health care. (With: W.J. Heiser and M.A. Nugter.) 


  • P. Bakvis: Psychogenic non epileptic seizures. Towards an integration of psychogenic, cognitive and neurobiological aspects. (With: K. Roelofs and F.G. Zitman.)


  • N.Y.L. Oei: Memory function after stress. The effects of acute stress and cortisol on memory and the inhibition of emotional distraction. (With: B.M. Elzinga.)
  • P. Meulenbeek: Prevention and early intervention in panic disorder. The effectiveness of the 'Don't panic course'. (With: W.J.M.J. Cuijpers and A.J.L.M. van Balkom.)


  • J.M. van Peer: To approach or to avoid. Neurobiological mechanisms in social anxiety. (With K. Roelofs.)
  • M.J. Verschuur: Effects of the Medical Investigation Bijlmermeer Aviation Disaster on health perception of residents and rescue workers. (With: F.R. Rosendaal.)
  • A. Dingemans: Binge or control? Assessment of the validity, treatment and underlying mechanisms of Binge Eating Disorder. (With: E.F.van Furth and C.Martijn.)
  • M.S. Tollenaar: Fading memories. The impact of stress hormones on the retrieval of emotional memories. (With: W.T.A.M. Everaerd and B. Elzinga.)


  • N. Slee: Cognitive-behavioural therapy for deliberate self-harm. (With: N.Garnefski and E.Arensman.)
  • R. Haringsma: Never too old to learn. The effectiveness of the Coping with Depression course for elderly. (With: G. Engels.)


  • W. Merens: Manipulating serotonin function in depression. (With: A.J.W. van der Does.)
  • M. Blom: Combination treatment for depressed outpatients. Efficacy and prediction of outcome. (With: R. van Dyck and E. Hoencamp.)
  • A.E. van Giezen: A memory like an elephant. The consistency of memory for emotional events. (With: E. Arensman.)
  • A. Greeven: Hypochondriasis. Diagnostic issues and treatment. (With: A.J.L.M. van Balkom.)


  • T.M. Bean: Assessing the psychological distress and mental health care needs of unaccompanied refugee minors in the Netherlands. (With: L. Eurelings-Bontekoe)
  • C.L.H. Bockting: The rhythm of depression. The course of recurrent depression and prevention of relapse using cognitive therapy. (With: A.H. Schene and M.W. Koeter)
  • M. de Waal: Somatoform disorders in general practice. Epidemiology, treatment and comorbidity with depression and anxiety. (With: W.J.J. Assendelft)
  • I. Arnold: Somatoform disorders in general practice. Epidemiology, treatment and comorbidity with depression and anxiety. (With: W.J.J. Assendelft)
  • J. Giesen-Bloo: Crossing borders. Theory, assessment and treatment in borderline personality disorder. (With: A. Arntz and R. Van Dyck)
  • M. Swinkels: Psychiatric comorbidity in epilepsy. (With: R. Van Dyck.)


  • L. Booij: Experimental Manipulations of Tryptophan: Insight into Depression. (With: AJ.W. van der Does.)


  • I. Kremers: Remembering autobiographical events in borderline personality disorder. (With: R. Van Dyck and A.J.W. van der Does.)
  • L. van Gerwen: Fear of flying: Assessment and treatment issues. (With: R. Van Dyck.)


  • D.B. Oosterbaan: Social Phobia: Cognitive and pharmacological treatment. (With: R. van Dyck and A.J.L.M. van Balkom.)
  • F. Moene: Hypnosis and conversion disorder. (With: C.A.L. Hoogduin and R. van Dyck.)


  • A. Bakker: Psychological and pharmacological treatment in panic disorder. (With: R. van Dyck.)
  • D.C. Cath : Comparative studies in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder. (With: C.A.L. Hoogduin.)
  • V. Kraaij: Depressive symptoms in the elderly Negative life events and buffering factors. (With: C.M.J.G. Maes and E.J. de Wilde)


  • J. Kuyk: Pseudo-epileptic seizures. Differential diagnosis and psychological characteristics. (With: R. van Dyck.)
  • E.R.S. Nijenhuis: Somatoform dissociation: Phenomena, measurement, and theoretical issues. (With: R. van Dyck and O. van der Hart.)


  • A.S. van Peski-Oosterbaan: Panic in asthma and non-cardiac chest pain. Implications for cognitive behavioural therapy. (With H.G.M. Rooijmans and A.J.W. van der Does.)


  • M.M. ter Kuile: Treatment of chronic headaches: Factors associated with outcome. (With: H.G.M. Rooijmans.)


  • A.J.L.M. van Balkom: Comparative treatment studies in panic disorder with agoraphobia and obsessive compulsive disorder. (With: R. van Dyck and C.A.L. Hoogduin.)

Relevant links



Scientific Director / Professor of Clinical Psychology

  • Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen
  • Instituut Psychologie
  • Klinische Psychologie

Work address

Pieter de la Court
Wassenaarseweg 52
2333 AK Leiden
Room number 2B23



  • NIAS Chairman NIAS Fellows' Association
  • Kenniscentrum Chronische Vermoeidheid Chairman Supervisory Board
  • Stichting Valk Board member

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