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Personal profile

Personal information

I am a researcher and lecturer at the Sociology department of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. I obtained a master’s in Sociology (cum laude) and received a PhD in Sociology at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in 2022. I am member of the Social Gerontology Research Group of the  department of Sociology and a member of the social  functioning and Informal care group of the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA). 


My PhD research focused on informal care, especially from the spouse and spousal caregiver's burden.  I used the Andersen-Newman and Informal Care Model to explain informal care use and adaptations of the Pearlin Stress Proces model to explain caregiver's burden. My work has been published in The Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences, The Gerontologist, Ageing & Society,  and Journal of Aging & Health.  For my research on informal care, I employ data from the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA), a longitudinal and cohort-sequential study with almost 30 years of information on the physical, cognitive, social and emotional functioning of Dutch older adults (https://lasa-vu.nl/en/). For my research on caregiver's burden I used data from the Older Persons and
Informal Caregivers Survey — Minimum Data Set (TOPICS-MDS). TOPICS-MDS is designed to capture information on the physical and mental well-being of older persons and informal caregivers in the Netherlands. The Dutch National Care for the Elderly Program, initiated by the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports, was established in 2008 to promote proactive, integrated health care for older persons with complex care needs. Dutch projects collected data among older care recipients and on their primary informal caregiver https://topics-mds.eu/.  In my work, I aim to combine individual, relationship and context theories of care use and caregiving with sociological theories of social change that also explain care use and care giving.

Next to the  fundamental research as described above I do also more applied research for other organisations, for example the yearly Nationaal Vrijheids Onderzoek (NVO) research of the national committee 4 5 may (https://www.4en5mei.nl/onderzoek/nationaal-vrijheidsonderzoek)  and other dutch projects, for example for the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment. 

Ancillary activities

  • STAK Ambrig | Lieshout | Bestuurder | 2018-04-09 - 2026-04-09
  • Nationaal Comité 4 en 5 mei | Amsterdam | assistent onderzoeker | 2021-11-16 - 2024-12-25

Ancillary activities are updated daily

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality

Academic qualification

Sociology, PhD, Informal care and spousal caregiver's burden in old age, Research Programmes - Social Sciences


Award Date: 2 Nov 2022

Sociology (cum laude), Master, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

1 Sept 20121 Aug 2022

Award Date: 1 Aug 2013


  • H Social Sciences


Dive into the research topics where Joukje Swinkels is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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