Lab Director

Alexandre Heeren, Ph.D.

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Hometown:  Thorembais-Saint-Trond, Belgium

Alexandre Heeren, Ph.D., is a Research Professor and FNRS Research Associate (tenured research fellowship from the F.R.S.-FNRS Belgian National Science Foundation) at the Psychological Science Research Institute of UCLouvain, Belgium, where he heads the Stress and Anxiety Research Lab

Dr. Heeren's research focuses on the cognitive and affective processes involved in anxiety and related psychopathology. He has (co)authored more than 100 publications in international peer-review journals, including several first-author papers in top-tier journals in the field  (e.g., Clinical Psychology ReviewJournal of Anxiety Disorders). His track record also includes books, book chapters, and articles specifically dedicated to practitioners. He is currently Associate Editor of Journal of Anxiety Disorders (IF=5.26). 

Dr. Heeren has been the recipient of several research grants, fellowships, and awards.  In recognition of his early career contributions to the study of stress and anxiety, he received the 2020 STAR Early Career Award from the Stress, Trauma, Anxiety, and Resilience Society (STAR). According to the  PLOS Biology 2020 ranking of top scientists, he is among the top 5% scientists based on impact (subfields: “Clinical Psychology” & “Psychiatry”). 

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Postdoctoral researchers  

Alba Contreras, Ph.D.

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Hometown:  Malaga, Spain

 

Alba Contreras is a postdoctoral research fellow. She first completed a Master's program in Clinical and Health Psychology at the University of Malaga (Spain) and then obtained in 2020 her Ph.D. in Psychological Sciences from the Complutense University of Madrid (Spain). Her research has focused on the network approach to psychopathology, with a particular emphasis on assessing the dynamic interplay between transdiagnostic processes, such as emotion dysregulations, interpersonal processes, paranoia, and maladaptive beliefs. She has also been involved in several large projects on resilience and emotion regulation research. At UCLouvain, she focuses on temporal network approaches to emotional responses and worries when dealing with uncertain stressors (e.g., climate change; laboratory-induced stressors). She is also interested in meta-science and research methods (e.g., time-series, ecological sampling methods). 

She can be reached at alba.contreras@uclouvain.be.

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Ph.D Students  (by alphabetical order)

Marie-Annelise Blanchard

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Hometowns:  New Orleans, LA, USA & Soignies, Belgium

 

Annelise is a Ph.D. student in Psychological Sciences (2020-2024). After a BS in Psychology & Gender Studies at Tulane University (New Orleans, LA, USA), she graduated from KU Leuven in 2019 with an MA in Research Psychology. She is interested in investigating how early social and environmental factors influence child development, as well as the etiological mechanisms of psychopathology that involve childhood stressors.  Her current research involves applying network analysis and intensive time-series methods to disentangle the temporal dynamics of parental burnout, occurring when parents chronically lack the resources needed to cope with their specific parenting-related stressors. She received the 2020 Student Development Award from the Stress, Trauma, Anxiety, and Resilience Society (STAR) for her first publication on parental burnout. Her work is supported by a Research Fellowship from the F.R.S-FNRS Belgian National Science Foundation. She can be reached at marie.blanchard@uclouvain.be

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Charlotte Coussement

 

Hometown:  Grez-Doiceau, Belgium

 

Charlotte is a Ph.D. student in Psychological Sciences (2017-2021). She graduated from UCLouvain in 2014 with an MA in Clinical Neuropsychology. She is particularly interested in the intersection of neuropsychology and clinical psychology, and her research focuses on the role of executive processes in the co-occurrence of major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. She is also interested in the use of brain stimulation techniques (i.e., tDCS) and neuropsychological training in anxiety and related-psychopathology. In addition to research, Charlotte is working as a CBT therapist among patients with anxiety and mood disorders. She received the 2018 Best Poster Award at the GREPACO.

Her work is supported by a Doctoral Fellowship from the "Beau-Vallon Psychiatric Hospital" (Namur, Belgium). She can be reached at charlotte.coussement@uclouvain.be

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Yorgo Hoebeke

 

Hometown:  Bonheiden, Belgium

 

Yorgo is a Ph.D. student in Psychological Sciences (2018-2022). He graduated from UCLouvain in 2018 with an MA in Clinical Psychology. His research focuses on the application of network analysis to capture the complex dynamic interplay between transdiagnostic processes that are assumed to be involved in the maintenance of anxiety and related psychopathology, and especially top-down attention control and rumination. He is also interested in the use of transcranial Direct Current stimulation as a tool to target the neurocognitive processes assumedly involved in anxiety and related psychopathology. His work is supported by a Doctoral Fellowship from UCLouvain. He can be reached at yorgo.hoebeke@uclouvain.be

Camille Mouguiama-Daouda 

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Hometown:  Libreville, Gabon

 

Camille is a Ph.D. student in Psychological Sciences (2020-2024). He graduated from the University of Poitiers, France, in 2019 with an MSc in both Clinical and Research Psychology. His main research agenda focuses on understanding the psychological mechanisms of climate change anxiety. He is particularly interested in studying the potential roles of intolerance of uncertainty, attentional bias, and top-down attention control in the onset and maintenance of climate change anxiety. Camille is also interested in psychological research methods, and especially in measurement tools adaptation and development. His work is supported by a Doctoral Fellowship from the Gabonese National Research Agency He can be reached at camille.mouguiama@uclouvain.be

Research Assistants and Interns

Salomé Rolland

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Hometown:  Malèves-Sainte-Marie-Wastinnes, Belgium

Salomé is a last-year Master's student in Psychological Sciences at UCLouvain. She is interested in the role played by emotions in individuals' climate change perceptions. During her research internship, she focuses on the interplay between parenthood, eco-anxiety, and pro-environmental behaviors. She can be reached at: salome.rolland@student.uclouvain.be. 

Youness Bensaid

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Hometown:  Rabat, Morocco

 

Youness is a last-year Master's student in Psychological Sciences at UCLouvain. He is interested in climate anxiety, neuropsychology, and interdisciplinary questions at the interplay between clinical psychology and neuropsychology. During his internship, he focuses on eco-anxiety and time perception. He can be reached at youness.bensaid@student.uclouvain.be.

Mariah Matar

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Hometown:  Rabat, Morocco

 

Mariah is a last-year Master's student in Psychological Sciences at UCLouvain. She is interested in evolutionary theories of psychopathology. A militant against reductionism and nosography, her work focuses on studying how certain psychopathological processes may have positive outcomes. During her internship, she will design studies applying Signal Detection Theory to test the adaptive value of anxiety in the context of climate change. She can be reached at mariah.matar@student.uclouvain.be.

Alumni (since the creation of the lab team in 2018)

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Emmanuelle Schoonjans

Hometown:  Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium

Status: Research Interns (Jan 2020 - Feb 2021)

Now: PhD Student in Medical Sciences at UGent (Belgium)

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Jordan Revol

Hometown:  Lyon, France

Status: Research Interns (Sept 2020- Jan 2021)

Now: PhD Student in Psychological Sciences at KULeuven

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Rana Begum Kalkan 

Hometown:  Istanbul, Turkey

Status: Research Assistant (Jan 2021 to Sept 2021)

Now: Master of Sciences (research track) at KULeuven (Belgium)

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Alba Contreras Cuevas

Hometown:  Malaga, Spain

Status: Visiting Ph.D. student at UCLouvain (Sept 2019 - Jan 2020)

Now: Complutense Universtiy of Madrid

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Mónica Riesco de Vega 

Hometown:  Madrid, Spain

Status: Visiting Ph.D student  (Sept 2018 - Oct 2019)

Now: Ph.D. student in sport science, Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain) 

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Betül Özçimen

Hometown:  Istanbul, Turkey

Status: Visiting researchers (Oct 2018- Jan 2019)

Now: CBT Training (child and adolescent) at Anglia Ruskin University (UK)  

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