Jim van Os is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology at Maastricht University Medical Centre, Maastricht, The Netherlands, and Visiting Professor of Psychiatric Epidemiology at King's College, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK. He trained in Psychiatry in Casablanca (Morocco), Bordeaux (France) and finally at the Institute of Psychiatry and the Maudsley/Bethlem Royal Hospital in London (UK) and after his clinical training was awarded a three-year UK Medical Research Council Training Fellowship in Clinical Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. In 1995, he moved to Maastricht University Medical Centre.
He is on the editorial board of European and US psychiatric journals such as Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, European Psychiatry, Psychological Medicine, Schizophrenia Research, Schizophrenia Bulletin, Early Intervention in Psychiatry, Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences, Psychosis Journal, The Journal of Mental Health and the Journal of Psychiatry and Neurological Sciences. He is also an Academic Editor at PLoS ONE.
In 2011, he was elected member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW); he appears on the 2014 Thomson-Reuter Web of Science list of the world’s ‘most influential scientific minds’ of our time.
Jim van Os was coordinator of a €12M EU FP7 IP project on gene-environment interactions in schizophrenia (2009-2015), and is also active in clinical gene-environment interaction research in depression and bipolar disorder.
He was a member of the Psychosis Group of the DSM-5 Task Force, and was co-chair of the APA DSM/ICD conference Deconstructing Psychosis.
He is Director of Psychiatric Services at Maastricht University Medical Centre and runs a service for treatment-resistant depression and first episode psychosis.
Prof. van Os has strived to contribute to the area of brain-mind interplay in a non-reductionist fashion, focusing on the distribution of mental states in the population as related to mental ill-health, and the gene-environment interactions underlying these. He has developed the hypothesis that expression of mental ill-health can be traced to variation in normal mentation, establishing experiential and aetiological links between normal and pathological mental states. Novel diagnosis-free methods of measuring mental states in the flow of daily life can help us understand the symptoms of madness as something that has its origins in normal mentation, that people can monitor and learn to understand and control.
Treatment studies focus on novel mobile health (mHealth) applications in the early treatment of mental disorders, novel diagnostic paradigms based on Experience Sampling mental state circuitries, implementation of recovery based services in routine mental health settings, and aspects of patient-professional carer communication.