Koen Ponnet


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Over Koen Ponnet

Short bio

Koen Ponnet is a social psychologist who conducts research in the field of (media)psychology, sociology and communication studies. He is an assistant professor at Ghent University (UGent) and University of Antwerp (UA). He teaches six courses, amongst others General and Social Psychology, Mediapsychology and sociology, Introduction in Communication Scientific Research, and Quantitative techniques.  He is associated with the research group Media, ICT, and Interpersonal Relations in Organisations and Society (UA), the research group Media, Innovation and Communication Technologies (UGent), and the Herman Deleeck Center for Social Policy (UA).

Research interest

After obtaining his PhD in Psychology (UGent) in 2004, he worked several years in a non-academic environment. In 2009, he returned to the academic world and started to examine the determinants of online and offline health and risk behaviors of adolescents and adults (e.g. sexting, online self-disclosure, depressive symptoms, drug use, unsafe and unsecure behavior, attitudinal changes) and its association with online and offline social capital. In his research, Ponnet also pays attention to the situation of vulnerable groups, like those who are at risk of poverty or employees under poor working conditions. He co-operated in many national and international data collection projects, and has extensive expertise in developing questionnaires and research designs (e.g. http://www.researchprotocols.org/2014/1/e1/). Ponnet is (co)author of more than 60 WOS-indexed articles. Additionally, he wrote several VABB-SHW articles, books and book chapters as author or (co-)editor.

Associate editor Psychologica Belgica (IF: .426)


Koen Ponnet (co-)supervises the following researchers:  Joris Van Ouytsel (UA), Brahim Zarouali (UA), Sara De Bruyn (UA), Karolien van Nunen (UA), Lies De Kimpe (UA), Kim Van Hoorde (UA/UGENT), dr. Katrien Symons (UGENT), Jonas De Meulenaere (UGENT) and Sarah Anrijs (UGENT)

Personal information

Father of three sons: Jef (°2006), Joppe (°2008) and Guust (°2015).

Education and work experience

Koen Ponnet holds an MA in Psychology (1999), an MA in Industrial Entrepreneurship (2004) and a PhD in Psychology (2004). He also completed a one-year post-university program in Business Administration (2003) and a one-year post-university program in Project Management (2004). After his PhD, he worked as a fixed income analyst/commercial-technical employee at Petercam SA (2004-2006), as a project researcher at the Research Centre of Longitudinal and Life-Course Studies (2006) and as a strategic analyst at the Federal Police Department (2007-2008). Since 2009, he works at the University of Antwerp. In 2014, he worked one year at the European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES - Université Libre de Bruxelles) on a data collection project. In 2015, he joined to the Herman Deleeck Center for Social Policy and in 2016 he started at the Department of Communication Sciences of Ghent University.


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