dr. (Michelle) M Achterberg


Dr. Michelle Achterberg is a postdoctoral researcher in the SYNC-lab and is interested in social emotional development. In her studies, she focusses on the underlying neural mechanisms of, and environmental influences on, social emotion regulation in childhood.

Michelle collaborates on a large longitudinal twin study on brain development in childhood and emerging adolescence, as part of the Leiden Consortium on Individual Development (L-CID)). Within this study Michelle specifically focusses on longitudinal brain development and its relation to social information processing and behavioral control. Additionally, she is expanding her knowledge of functional and structural brain connectivity and investigates how brain development is influenced by genes and the environment.

On her personal website, dr. Achterberg regularly updates news on ongoing research projects and outreach activities: www.michelleachterberg.nl


Research interests: Behavioral control, Social Emotion Regulation,  Brain Development

Onderzoeksinteresses: Gedragscontrole, Sociale emotie regulatie, hersenontwikkeling



Michelle has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Research Master’s degree in Neuroscience. During her masters, Michelle worked as a research intern at the department of (child) psychiatry, University Medical Center Utrecht, where she gained her first experience with neuroimaging in children. Following her passion for developmental neuroscience, Michelle joined Eveline Crone’s Brain and Development Lab in 2014. In 2016 Michelle received a KNAW ter Meulen grant and Leiden University Fund to visit Prof. dr. Nim Tottenham at Columbia University New York. Michelle has presented her work on numerous national and international conferences and has received several trainee and travel awards.

In March 2020, Michelle defended her PhD thesis on “the nature, nurture and neural mechanisms of social emotion regulation in childhood”, for which she received the highest distinction (cum laude).

Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Assistant professor | Youth and Family
Burg. Oudlaan 50, Rotterdam


  • D (Daphne) van de Bongardt, R (Rianne) Kok, M (Michelle) Achterberg, SI (Sari) Hogye, FM (Frank) Weerman, J (Joran) Jongerling, MC (Miranda) Lutz & LP (Linda) Dekker (2021) - Annual Peer Relations Onderzoekers (PRO) conference

  • Michelle Achterberg, Lysanne te Brinke & Miranda Lutz (2022) - Dragon's Den Seed Fund

2.1C Biological Determinants

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News regarding dr. (Michelle) M Achterberg

Dankzij onderzoek van Michelle Achterberg begrijpen we beter hoe kinderen opgroeien tot sociale volwassenen

Dr. Michelle Achterberg onderzoekt de ontwikkeling van sociaal gedrag bij kinderen. Voor haar werk ontving zij de Research Prize tijdens de 109e dies natalis.
Michelle Achterberg, researcher at ESSB

Dissertatieprijs voor Michelle Achterberg voor onderzoek naar sociale emotieregulatie bij kinderen

Michelle Achterberg ontvangt de dissertatieprijs van de Nederlandse Vereniging van Ontwikkelingspsychologie voor haar promotieonderzoek.

“Living labs kunnen de kloof tussen wetenschap en maatschappij echt verkleinen”

Lysanne te Brinke, Michelle Achterberg en Karlijn Hermans vertellen over hoe zij impact maken via living labs en hoe de Impact Dialogue daaraan bijdraagt.
Tropicana view

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