My ambition is to contribute to better personal, public and planetary health through behavioral change. Most of my work focuses on healthy lifestyles (e.g., nutrition, physical activity, stress), but also includes behaviors related to infectious diseases (e.g., antimicrobial resistance, vaccination, hygiene).
Hereto I consider it crucial to advance our fundamental understanding of health behaviors and lifestyles. The point of departure is that individual behaviors arise in social, economical and physical contexts and that this requires an interdisciplinary approach to better understand behavior (e.g., integrating psychology, sociology, geography, epidemiology). These behavioral insights are used in intervention development, evaluation and implementation and are directed at individuals, environments and wider systems. Technology (eHealth, GIS, ICT) is used to facilitate interventions as well as research methods to study behaviors in context.
Emely obtained a PhD in health sciences in 2005 at Maastricht University, after which she held different academic positions in public health (ErasmusMC Medical Center), health promotion and disease prevention (VU Amsterdam) and psychology (Utrecht University). In 2013 she became employed at Wageningen University where she was promoted to personal professor in health communication and behavior change in 2016. In 2019 the new structural chair group Consumption and Healthy Lifestyles was initiated, where Emely was appointed professor and chair.
Emely was awarded prestigious grants for her research at the intersection of behavioral science and (public) health science (NWO Talent scheme VIDI, ZonMW TOP excellence scheme, NWO transitions and behavior). In the past 5 years she and her team members secured more than >20 million euros of competitive funding and the chair group Consumption and Healthy Lifestyles currenty includes > 40 team members. Emely is member of editorial boards in high impact journals in the field of psychology (Health Psychology Review) and behavioral epidemiology and public health (International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity).
To support research, practice and policy on health behaviour change she is on scientific boards of –among others- the , Topsector Creative Industries (ClickNL) and AGORA public health academic collaborative workplace. She is a member of the National Health Council and advises the Dutch parliament on nutrition, and is currently also advising the European Commission on shifting diets and food system transitions.
More information on our team can be found at www.wur.eu/chl