Prof. dr. Geert Van Hove is Professor of Disability Studies at the Amsterdam UMC, location VUmc, department of Medical Humanities.

He has held the endowed Chair in Disability Studies since December 2013. On Thursday, November 13th, 2014 he gave his inaugural lecture titled "Disability Studies and participation of people with disabilities - about cooperative research and complex processes".

With the establishment of this Chair, the Disability Studies in the Netherlands foundation (DSiN) and Amsterdam UMC, location VUmc collaborate on the theme of 'disability' as a social phenomenon, in which topics such as (labor) participation, expertise by experience and (Family) Quality of Life hold a central place. Important objectives of the Chair are to initiate the Disability Studies field in the Netherlands and to create cooperation in education and research between research groups at the Amsterdam UMC. This special Chair has been realised in partnership with the Rehabilitation Fund, Fund for the Intellectually Handicapped, the Dutch Foundation for disabled children (NSGK), MEE Netherlands and Foundation SPZ.

Prof. dr. Geert Van Hove has also been Professor of Disability Studies and Inclusive Education at Ghent University, Department of Special Needs Education since 1993. As one of the first researchers in Belgium, he founded several projects for people with intellectual disabilities in the 1980s. Through his work as a professor at the University of Ghent, Van Hove is closely involved with families who choose inclusive education for their children with disabilities. He is also committed to the international empowerment movement "Our New Future". Van Hove combines his position at the Amsterdam UMC with his professorship at Ghent University.

Medical Humanities

Disability Studies is situated within the research line "Participation and Diversity" at the Department of Medical Humanities of the Amsterdam UMC. Medical Humanities is embedded in the Amsterdam Public Health research institute.

The Department of Medical Humanities situates healthcare in a social context and thereby aims to provide insight into social processes, cultural patterns and normative issues in medicine and healthcare. Research themes include moral case deliberation, patient participation in research and policymaking, intercultural issues and quality of care.

Quality of care stretches beyond procedures and technical expertise, and also includes reflection on normative persuasions and value-laden issues that arise in concrete situations. Empirical-ethical research designs are used to integrate empirical research among stakeholders with ethical analyses, and to actively use the input of experiential, scientific and professional knowledge. Responsive and interactive methodologies and moral deliberation methods that engage stakeholders in the research process are used alongside theoretical reflection to respond to ethical questions. These approaches have their common basis in dialogical ethics and pragmatic hermeneutics. 

The Department of Medical Humanities provides university education at Bachelors, Masters and Postgraduate levels.