Prof. G.J.J.M. Stams (1959) has been named Professor of Forensic Child and Youth Care Sciences at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences at the University of Amsterdam (UvA).
Geert Jan Stams' research centres on severe behavioural and child-rearing problems in early childhood through young adulthood in which judicial intervention is or seems necessary. Such interventions can arise from criminal proceedings (interventions aimed at dealing with youth delinquency) or civil actions (interventions aimed at removing serious threats to a child's development, such as in custody placements). Stams' research focuses on moral development within ‘normal' groups and specific (offender) groups. He also specialises in validation research for measurement tools with practical applications in child and youth care (including forensic), such as those designed to establish the risk of juvenile offender recidivism. Further research interests are the effectiveness of forensic and other youth care interventions and the conditions under which they take place, including an investigation into the treatment climate in residential youth care facilities. Last but not least, Stams has acquired considerable expertise in doing meta-analyses in the domain of child and youth care interventions, child development and child-rearing.
Since 2002, Stams has worked at the UvA as an associate professor of Special Education. Together with Prof. Peter van der Laan, he designed the UvA's minor in Youth Criminality and Judicial Youth Policy in 2006, followed a year later by the Master's programme in Forensic Child and Youth Care Sciences. Prior to this, Stams worked at Utrecht University, Leiden University and as a youth care practitioner. He spent several years chairing the Databank Effectieve Jeugdinterventies (Effective Youth Interventions Databank) and, later, the Erkenningscommissie Jeugdinterventies (Youth Interventions Certification Committee). Stams works closely with various organisations in the youth care sector, including Spirit in Amsterdam and Jeugdformaat in The Hague.