Katrien Helmerhorst works as a postdoctoral research fellow on the VIDI proposal of Prof. dr. Renske Keizer (“Dad’s role in the development of children’s diverging destinies”). This research project focusses on the uniqueness of fathers by examining the father-child attachment versus mother-child attachment. This study examines to what extent both fathers and mothers provide a secure base for their child and/or facilitate their children’s exploration. In addition, the study will assess how parental attachment roles are related to the family’s SES and child outcomes.
Her research has a focus on three main topics: 1) parenting behavior of (professional) caregivers, 2) early childcare centers, and 3) parenting interventions.
In 2014, Katrien finished her PhD at the department of Child Development and Education, University of Amsterdam. During her PhD, she developed and evaluated an intervention program (video-feedback training) for professional caregivers in center based child care.
Both during her PhD and previous postdoctoral research, she coordinated projects with extensive data collection which enabled her to build a strong network with practitioners in the field and governmental officials at the Dutch Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment.