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de Boer, N.S., Runhardt, R.W. (2024). Review essay: Limits of the Numerical and the personalized measurement trend in mental health care. Philosophy of the Social Sciences

Limits of the Numerical calls for the (re)contextualization of the numerical in the social domain and emphasizes that using quantitative data has epistemic and practical/moral considerations that may not align. In this review essay, we evaluate these claims using a case study, viz. the personalized, clinical experience sampling method (ESM) in mental health care. This case study (1) nuances claims made in Limits of the Numerical regarding the generality and non-contextuality of numerical data, and (2) highlights two additional dimensions to the numerical that have been underexposed in the book (i.e., reactivity and Ballung concepts).

de Boer, N.S., Kostić, D., Ross, M., de Bruin, L.C., Glas, G. (2022). Using network models in person-centered care in psychiatry: How perspectivism could help to draw boundaries. Frontiers in Psychiatry

In this paper, we explore the conceptual problems that arise when using network analysis in person-centered care in psychiatry. We focus on how to draw boundaries for personalized network models: how to decide what should or should not be included. We explore how boundaries influence what clinically-relevant knowledge a model can provide; what kind of boundaries network models have, and how focusing on the context and values in which these models are used can help to draw these boundaries.

de Boer, N. S., de Bruin, L. C., Geurts, J. J. G., & Glas, G. (2021). The network theory of psychiatric disorders: A critical assessment of the inclusion of environmental factors. Frontiers in Psychology

The network theory states that mental disorders should be conceptualized as relatively stable networks of causally interacting symptoms, but acknowledges that non-symptom variables such as environmental factors also play an important role in the development, treatment, and sustenance of mental disorders. In this paper, we explore how environmental factors are incorporated into the network theory of mental disorders, and what kind of explanations an ‘extended’ network theory can provide. Can it provide causal, mechanistic, or topological explanations? We suggest that a multilayer network structure could allow for the integration of symptoms and other factors, whilst accommodating different types of explanatory strategies.


Hoven, M., de Boer, N.S., Goudriaan, A.E., Denys D., van Holst, R.J., Lebreton, M., Luigjes J. (2022). Metacognition and the effect of incentive motivation in two compulsive disorders: gambling disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences

Hoven, M., Brunner, G., de Boer, N.S., Goudriaan, A.E., Denys D., van Holst, R.J., Luigjes J., Lebreton M. (2022). Motivational signals disrupt metacognitive signals in the human ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Communications Biology

de Boer, N. S.*, Schluter, R. S.*, Daams, J. G., van der Werf, Y. D., Goudriaan, A. E., & van Holst, R. J. (2021). The effect of non-invasive brain stimulation on executive functioning in healthy controls: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews (*: shared first author)