Jacob de Boer

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Personal information


Professor Jacob de Boer is the head of  Environmental and Health. He is professor in Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology. He is also Editor-in-Chief of Chemosphere (Elsevier). In 2013 he was appointed by the Chinese government as National Expert for China for the period 2013-2018. He is a member of the CEFIC LRI Scientific Advisory Panel (ESAP), the Board of the International BFR symposia series, and the QUASIMEME Scientific Advisory Board. He has coordinated a number of European Research projects and a large number of research projects for international organizations and industrial organizations. He has published over 200 peer reviewed articles, 20 book chapters and one book on the analysis and monitoring of environmental contaminants. He has organized many workshops, is a regular contributor to radio and television documentaries and news programs on chemical substances, and he is a regularly invited speaker at international symposia.

Professor De Boer has worked for more than 40 years on the contamination of the environment with persistent organic pollutants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), brominated and organophosphorus flame retardants, chlorinated paraffins and many other contaminants. Nowadays, he is also working on micro-plastics and marine litter. He gained a lot of experience in the organisation of international interlaboratory studies on contaminants and on the production of (certified) reference materials for contaminant analysis. He is an advisor for UNEP and various other international organizations. He is member of the editorial board of the Handbook of Environmental Chemistry (Springer), and was guest-editor of special issues for Trends in Analytical Chemistry (2006, 2013), Chemosphere (2008, 2010, 2013, 2016), Molecular Nutrition and Food Research (2008), and Journal of Chromatography A (2009).


  • Analytical chemistry
  • Environmental chemistry
  • Gas Chromatography/mass spectrometry
  • Preparation of (certified) reference materials
  • Proficiency tests and interlaboratory studies
  • Quality assurance
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)
  • Flame retardants (BFRs, CFRs, PFRs)
  • Marine litter and micro-plastics
  • Effect-directed analysis
  • Advice on highly toxic substances
  • Food safety (chemical)

Academic training

  • 1975  BSc Analytical chemistry, Haarlem, The Netherlands
  • 1995  PhD Analytical chemistry, VU University, Amsterdam (Prof. Brinkman), The Netherlands

Professional employment history

  • 2017 -  Head of VU Dept. Environment & Health
  • 2012-2015 Director of IVM (VU)
  • 2009-2012  Deputy Director IVM (VU)
  • 2006-now  Chair of Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology (VU)
  • 2006-2016 Head Dept. Chemistry and Biology, IVM (VU)
  • 2005-2006 Professor Analytical Environmental Chemistry, Wageningen University, Depts. of Toxicology and Fisheries and Fish Farming (Personal professorship, 20%)
  • 2002-2005 Head Dept. Environment and Food Safety, RIVO (Contract-based laboratory, accredited under the Dutch Council for Accreditation (R097, ISO 17025 and ISO 9001)
  • 1992-2005 Senior scientist, Head Environmental Research Group and Deputy Head of the Dept. Environment, Quality, Technology and Nutrition, RIVO
  • 1986-1992 Junior scientist, RIVO
  • 1976-1986 Head of laboratory, RIVO
  • 1974-1976 Technician, Netherlands Institute for Fisheries Research (RIVO), IJmuiden, The Netherlands

Supervision PhD students

Stefan van Leeuwen (2009)
Annelies Hommersom (2010)
Thijs van Boxtel (2010)
Eszter Simon (2013)
Sicco Brandsma (2014)
Joantina van Esterik (2015)
Sara Tufi (2016)
Xiju Ouyang (2016)

Liana Bastos Sales
Louise van Mourik
Nick Zwart
Ike van der Veen
Martin Brits
Cornelius Rimayi
Kumelachew Mulu Loha
Ewa Skocszynska
Leonardo Mena Rivera

Selected publications

  • Leslie, H., P.E.G. Leonards, S. Brandsma, J. de Boer, N. Jonkers (2016). Propelling plastics into the circular economy - weeding out the toxics first. Environ. Intern. 94, 230-234.
  • Ballesteros-Gómez, A.M., A. Covaci, J. de Boer (2016). Screening of additives in plastics with high resolution time-of-flight mass spectrometry and different ionization sources: direct probe injection (DIP)-APCI, LC-APCI and LC-ion booster ESI. Anal. Bioanal. Chem. 408, 2945-2954.
  • Van Mourik, L., C. Gaus, P. Leonards, J. de Boer (2016).  Chlorinated paraffins – trends in environmental levels - review. Chemosphere 155, 415-428.
  • Ballesteros-Gomez, A., J de Boer P.E.G. Leonards (2013). Novel Analytical Methods for Flame Retardants and Plasticizers based on Gas Chromatography, Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Gas Chromatography and Direct Probe Coupled to Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Ionization-High Resolution Time-of-Flight-Mass Spectrometry. Anal. Chem. 85, 9572-9580.
  • Brandsma, S.H., J. de Boer, P.E.G. Leonards (2014). Organophosphorus flame retardants (PFRs) and plasticizers in house and car dust and the influence of electronic equipment. Chemosphere 116, 3-9.
  • Veen, I. van der, J de Boer (2012). Phosphorus flame retardants: Properties, production, environmental occurrence, toxicity and analysis. Chemosphere 88, 1119-1153.
  • Belpaire, C.G.J., G. Goemans, C. Geeraerts, P. Quataert, K. Parmentier, P. Hagel, J. de Boer (2009).  Decreasing eel stocks : survival of the fattest Ecol. Freshwater Fish. 18, 197-214.
  • De Boer, J., H. Leslie, S.P.J. van Leeuwen, J.-W. Wegener, B. van Bavel, G. Lindström, H. Fiedler (2008). UNEP intercomparisons and training on POPs analysis under the Stockholm Convention. Anal. Chim. Acta 617, 208-215.
  • Skoczynska, E., P. Korytar, J. de Boer (2008). Maximizing chromatographic information from GCxGC-ToF-MS. Environ. Sci. Technol. 42, 6611–6618.
  • De Boer, J., P.G. Wester, J.C. Klamer, W.E. Lewis and J.P. Boon (1998). Brominated flame retardants in sperm whales and other marine mammals - a new threat to ocean life? Nature 394, 28-29.

Ancillary activities

  • Elsevier | Amsterdam | Redacteur | 2018-10-10 - present

Ancillary activities are updated daily

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Jacob de Boer is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 14 Similar Profiles
Flame Retardants Chemical Compounds
Mass spectrometry Chemical Compounds
Gas chromatography Chemical Compounds
Halogenated Diphenyl Ethers Chemical Compounds
Polychlorinated Biphenyls Chemical Compounds
Gas Chromatography Medicine & Life Sciences
Liquid chromatography Chemical Compounds
Organic pollutants Chemical Compounds

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2001 2020

Brominated and organophosphorus flame retardants in South African indoor dust and cat hair

Brits, M., Brandsma, S. H., Rohwer, E. R., De Vos, J., Weiss, J. M. & de Boer, J., 1 Oct 2019, In : Environmental Pollution. 253, p. 120-129 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Flame Retardants
Flame retardants

Chlorinated Paraffins in Car Tires Recycled to Rubber Granulates and Playground Tiles

Brandsma, S. H., Brits, M., Groenewoud, Q. R., van Velzen, M. J. M., Leonards, P. E. G. & de Boer, J., 2 Jul 2019, In : Environmental Science and Technology. 53, 13, p. 7595-7603 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access


de Boer, J., Feb 2019, In : Chemosphere. 217, p. A1-A2 2 p.

Research output: Contribution to JournalEditorialAcademicpeer-review

Open Access

Optimising analytical methods for chlorinated paraffins to evaluate their levels in Australia

van Mourik, L. M., 2019, 310 p.

Research output: PhD ThesisPhD Thesis - Research VU, graduation VUAcademic

Open Access

Retention behaviour of alkylated and non-alkylated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons on different types of stationary phases in gas chromatography

Skoczyńska, E. & de Boer, J., 1 Mar 2019, In : Separations. 6, 1, p. 1-12 12 p., 7.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
Gas chromatography
Ionic Liquids
Ionic liquids

Activities 2006 2016

Simultaneous determination of chemicals in indoor dust for potential human exposure assessment

L. Lucattini (Speaker), M.H. Lamoree (Speaker), J. de Boer (Speaker), A.M. Ballesteros-Gomez (Speaker), J. Meijer (Speaker), P.E.G. Leonards (Speaker)
16 Jun 2016

Activity: Lecture / PresentationAcademic

Application of miniaturized cell-based bioassays for high-throughput effect-directed analysis of passive sampler extracts using microfractionation

N. Zwart (Speaker), T. Hamers (Speaker), W. Jonker (Speaker), C.J. Houtman (Speaker), G. Somsens (Speaker), J. de Boer (Speaker), J. Kool (Speaker), M.H. Lamoree (Speaker)
25 May 2016

Activity: Lecture / PresentationAcademic

Non-target and suspect screening for organic substances in indoor dust for human exposure assessment

L. Lucattini (Speaker), A.M. Ballesteros-Gomez (Speaker), S.H. Brandsma (Speaker), M.H. Lamoree (Speaker), J. de Boer (Speaker), L. Småstuen Haug (Speaker), J.A. Padilla Sanchez (Speaker), E.Z. Papadopoulou (Speaker), P.E.G. Leonards (Speaker)

Activity: Lecture / PresentationAcademic

Screening of additives in plastics from electric/electronic devices

J. de Boer (Speaker)
9 Apr 2015

Activity: Lecture / PresentationAcademic


Press / Media

Nerve gas

Jacob de Boer


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Expert Comment

Health risk of rubber granulate on soccer pitches

Jacob de Boer


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Other

Ongezonde concentraties GenX en C8 op groente en fruit rond Chemours

Jacob de Boer


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Expert Comment

In Dordrecht is 'Uit eigen tuin' geen aanbeveling

Jacob de Boer


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities

Gen X production and risks in Dordrecht

Jacob de Boer


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Expert Comment