Hilde Geurts studies the cognitive strengths and weaknesses of people with autism and ADHD. While her work examines the entire lifespan, she studies elderly persons in particular. Bridging experimental research and the field of clinical practice forms a key part of her work.
In her capacity as professor, Geurts will focus on heterogeneity within diagnostic classifications, cognitive strategies and the relationship between subjective (cognitive) symptoms and objective measures of (cognitive) function. While the emphasis of her work will remain on autism and ADHD, attention will also be devoted to Parkinson’s disease, forms of dementia and mental disorders such as mood and anxiety disorders. It is important to Geurts that her academic research ultimately finds its way into clinical practice. As a result, she is particularly eager to explore cooperation with various special interest organisations and clinical centres. Geurts is currently leading a major study involving ageing in persons with autism, in which the aforementioned themes are addressed. The study centres on the question of whether it is possible to predict differences in ageing patterns, including those concerning cognition.
Geurts joined the UvA’s Brain and Cognition Department in 2002, first as assistant professor and later as an associate professor. In 2011, she was named professor by special appointment of Autism: Cognition over the Lifespan. She was a practising psychologist and is senior researcher at the 'Dr Leo Kannerhuis' TOPGGz institution for mental health service, and serves as vice-president of the International Society for Autism Research. In addition, she is the initiator of the REACH-AUT research network, a partnership of over thirty Dutch organisations working in the field of autism. Geurts was a fellow of the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study (NIAS) from 2016 to 2017, and from 2014 to 2016 served on the board of the Young Academy of the Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW). Geurts has earned various grants, including a Vici (2017) and a Vidi (2010) grant from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), along with grants from ZONMW and RAAK/PRO.