Recap colloquium ‘Reimagining will & skill’

What can we do to support youth who struggle with antisocial behavior and addiction to achieve their own long-term goals? This was the main question we tackled at the second Healthy Start colloquium on 13 June at Kunsthal Rotterdam: ‘Reimagining will & skill’. During this inspiring day we brought together experts from various disciplines to share their unique insights, methods and tools to support youth during treatment and in daily life.

Why is it important to study and treat combined antisocial behavior and addiction problems? Healthy Start Ambition Lead and assistant professor Dr. Reshmi Marhe kicked off the colloquium by introducing us to the complexity of combined antisocial behavior and addiction problems.

Clinical Professor Prof. dr. James Blair then started his keynote by reiterating the importance of multi-disciplinary and trans-disciplinary collaboration, illustrated by the success of a large-scale collaboration between research, specifically brain research, and clinical practice at Boys Town National Research Hospital.

Healthy Start PhD candidate Jennie Lukoff explained that young adults who show combined antisocial behavior and addiction problems might benefit from more personalized treatment to effectively change their behavior. She elaborated on her research approach and how she involves youth and technology in the process.

Prof. dr. Ingmar Franken and dr. Willem-Paul Brinkman joined the speakers in the interactive discussion with the audience. We wrapped up the day with networking drinks.

Healthy Start Fellow Ilse van de Groep reflects on the colloquium: “We can move forward in various ways: by improving our measurements of neuropsychological functioning through machine learning, we can hopefully develop clinical tools that target problems in daily functioning. We can make research more ecologically valid by using experience sampling methods, and use smartphones and other tools to make treatment immersive and fun. The perspectives of youth themselves holds great promise to advance both research and treatment. This aligns with the shift we hope to make within our project, from merely identifying and treating problems, to simultaneously also highlighting the strengths of youth, and supporting them to foster the joys in their lives.”

Did you miss the colloquium and would you like more information about our ambition or are you interested in collaborating with us? Please contact us via