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Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health

Together for more healthy years
Aletta Jacobs School of Public HealthAletta's Stories

Femke Abma

Participation - researcher

Femke Abma, postdoc researcher UMCG

I was born on a Frisian island. There you are often dependent on each other. The fact that you are surrounded by water as a relatively small community does something to you. Everyone knows everyone and you run into each other over and over. You have to be able to handle that. You belong due to the simple fact that you were born there. With the discovery of boundaries of this land surrounded by water, I also got to know my own boundaries. My parents encouraged me to discover who I was and what I wanted. And encouraging did not stop when I had to become fairly independent early on because I started taking my education ashore. The boat trips finally brought me to the world of psychology of work and health. At the dynamic interface between person, health and work, I try to understand the impact of illness on someone's life. Thereby not only looking at their personal life but also their working life. Work often plays an important role in staying healthy and/or recovering. Because for many people, work is so much more than just generating income ...


My name is Femke Abma and with my research I want to contribute to achieving more healthy working years for people with health problems. From research we know that having work and doing work can make a positive contribution to health and quality of life because it makes a valuable contribution to society. My work as a researcher forms the scientific basis for knowledge and products such as interventions and instruments in the field of work and health. Translating relevant knowledge into products for practice whose scientific evidence has been provided by us as researchers. In order to get to those relevant results, intensive cooperation with, among other things, occupational health and safety services and UWV is crucial. A good example of this is the academic workplace with UWV-Noord. Knowledge, instrument or intervention; they only prove their value in those real-life situations where people get stuck and are unable to work for a while. That impact is always personal, because it is always about people like you and me. In this world of labor participation, in this world of being able to and being allowed to participate, Aletta plays a connecting role as far as I am concerned. It initiates, brings together and ensures the connection between scientists, but also between science and practice. In this way we work together in a very practical way towards the outcome of our shared dream. Thinking to do; More healthy working years together.

Femke Abma
Last modified:24 May 2019 3.16 p.m.
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