Heidi Vandebosch - Biography#

Heidi Vandebosch holds a master’s degree in communication sciences. She received a PhD in social sciences from the K.U.Leuven (1999) for her dissertation entitled “A Captive Audience: The Media Use of Prisoners.” After her PhD, she was awarded a postdoctoral grant from the Research Council of the K.U.Leuven (1999-2000) and from the Fund for Scientific Research Flanders (2000-2004). In 2004, she became an assistant professor at the University of Antwerp.

Currently, Heidi Vandebosch is a professor in the Department of Communication Studies and a senior member of the research group MIOS. Since 2005, most of her research has focused on cyberbullying (prevalence, profiles of bullies and victims, impact, the role of schools, parents, the police and (news) media) and the development of evidence-based (narrative/technological ) health interventions. She was/is the promotor of about 15 cyberbullying-related projects and 5 (narrative/technological) intervention-related projects (focused on food, physical activity or mental health), funded by governments, the UAntwerp Research Council and scientific research agencies (e.g., FWO, IWT).

Heidi Vandebosch teaches the courses: Introduction to Communication Studies (1BA), Media: Audiences and Effects (2BA) and Health Communication (MA).

Heidi Vandebosch is internationally active. She was member of the Management Committee of COST action I‪S0801 (“Cyberbullying: coping with negative and enhancing positive uses of new technologies, in relationships in educational settings”) and coordinator of WP4 of the Marie Curie Research Staff Exchange Scheme (IRSES) “HealthNar” (see: healthnar.ruhosting.nl). Currently she is member of the Management Committee of COST action CA18115 (“Transnational Collaboration on Bullying, Migration and Integration at School Level). Heidi Vandebosch is also part of the NeFCA board (co-chairing the Health Communication Division) and book review editor of “Communications. The European Journal of Communication Research” (communicationsonline.eu/‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬).‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

Heidi Vandebosch has published internationally in journals such as: "Aggressive Behavior", “Cyberpsychology and Behavior”, “New Media and Society”, “European Journal of Developmental Psychology”, “Computers in Human Behavior”, “Media Psychology”, and “Communications. The European Journal of Communication Research”, “Journal of Early Adolescence”, “Journal of Children and Media”, “Health Communication”, “Journal of Happiness Studies”, “Learning and Individual Differences”, “Computers and Education”, “International Journal of Cyber Society and Education”.

Heidi Vandebosch was expert in the working group “Tackling Bullying in Schools” of the Flemish Educational Board (VLOR)(10/11/2014 - 31/01/2015). Since 4/6/2015 she is expert member of the VLOR-discussion platform “Well-being and bullying in schools”. Heidi Vandebosch is regular jury member of the yearly anti-bullying prize (since 2015) in Flanders ("Pesten-dat-kan-niet"-prijs). Heidi Vandebosch’s team developed content and tools for the Flemish Knowledge Center on Media Literacy (Mediawijs): information on cyberbullying for its general website (https://mediawijs.be/dossiers/dossier-cyberpesten ), narratives for the “Medianest”- website (aimed at parents), and a gamified toolbox for school teams (https://mediawijs.be/cyberscan). Heidi Vandebosch is a regular speaker at schools, mental health organizations, conferences… about (cyber)bullying. She was also invited for two round tables about cyberbullying by her Majesty, Queen Mathilde of Belgium.

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