Daan is a postdoctoral researcher and works 60% in the Meaning Research in Late Life team. He is also affiliated for 40% in the Society and Ageing Research Lab (VUB). He holds a master’s degree in Gerontology and a PhD in adult educational sciences. Daan's main research interests are about well-being in later life, with a specific focus on meaning in life. His methodological expertise includes qualitative research with in-depth interviews and focus group discussions, as well as systematic literature reviews.
Within the Meaning Research in Late Life team, he mainly works in the FWO funded EXIDEP-project. In this project, we research the experiences of existential suffering (meaninglessness, existential loneliness) in nursing home residents. Daan also works in the Constructive Advanced Thinking Program on the EXIST WELL study, which researches the relation between existential suffering and depression in older adults.
In the past, he worked as a postdoctoral researcher on national and international projects at the VUB and LUCAS KU Leuven. During his PhD, he researched the relationship between well-being and social environmental factors in frail older adults. Prior to his PhD, he worked 10 years in elderly care as a geriatric and public health nurse. He has ample teaching and international experience, he was a four-month visiting researcher at the University for Humanistic studies in Utrecht, The Netherlands and did his gerontology internship at the age friendly city department (now the center for healthy ageing) New York Academy of Medicine in New York, USA.
Daan is the chairman of gerontologen NET Vlaanderen