As a research group, we develop knowledge and insights for the benefit of practice regarding societal safety (crime and disturbance). We also strive to strengthen the cooperation between professionals. Important themes include: adopting the person-specific approach, knowledge about criminal behaviour and information security.

The person-specific approach is focused on perpetrators of crimes that have a major impact, such as domestic violence and burglary. Many professionals from different organisations are involved in this approach.

This line of research is aimed at supporting organisations and professionals in implementing the personal-specific approach. We develop knowledge and methods to provide tailor-made approaches in dealing with such offenders, as well as to strengthen the cooperation between professionals.

In this line of research, we work on improving the knowledge base for professionals in the broader field of security. The objective is to render scientific knowledge more accessible to professionals in both education and in practice. However, this also functions in reverse, whereby knowledge and insight from practice serves to strengthen scientific knowledge.

One example is a project aimed at expanding the neuroscientific knowledge about criminal behaviour. This knowledge is difficult to apply without the right foundations, because of which misinterpretations can easily arise, leading, for instance, to an overly negative assessment about the client or exaggerated expectations of the professional.

The new privacy law raises questions among professionals about the responsible use of personal data. Can one still exchange data with partner organisations under this new legislation, and how should one go about this?

This line of research studies the use of data and personal data in the broader field of security. How, as a professional, should you handle sensitive data? And how do we prevent important values, such as justice and inclusion, from being compromised in the development of new processes and systems?



The research group works closely with lecturers and students from multiple degree programmes relevant to the fields of societal safety and security. In this way, our research results have a direct impact on our degree programmes. We also contribute to the implementation and development of the bachelor's and master's educational programmes.

Skate park with a flat in the background

“Through cooperation with the research group an interested party can really make headway in their goal to professionalise. They are able to gain a new perspective on the way we work and to come up with practical and well-founded solutions based on research, which is of course quite valuable”

Jenneke van Spaandonk Health and safety advisor


The research group works closely with partners from education, research and practice: (forensic and social) professionals working at local and national government institutions, municipalities, police departments, probation services, as well as youth care, social care and welfare organisations. Collaborative partners include: Bureau Regionale Veiligheidsstrategie, Veiligheidshuis Regio Utrechtand Rotterdam, the EFM and the municipalities of Zeist, Hilversum, Utrecht, Veenendaal, and Rotterdam.

Our professors and researchers

Andrea Donker | Professor | Knowledge analysis societal security

Andrea Donker

Professor Knowledge Analysis Societal Security Show profile
Widya de Bakker | Researcher / PhD candidate | Knowledge analysis societal security and Working with Mandated Clients

Widya de Bakker

Researcher Knowledge Analysis Societal Security, Working with Mandated Clients Show profile
Anke van Gorp | Researcher | Knowledge analysis societal security

Anke van Gorp

Researcher Knowledge Analysis Societal Security Show profile
Ingrid van Houwelingen | Researcher | Research group Knowledge analysis societal security

Ingrid van Houwelingen

Researcher Knowledge Analysis Societal Security Show profile

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