Ellen Hamaker UU


First nameEllen
Last nameHamaker
FTE0.3 (2019 - 2028)
Brief summary of research over last 5 years

Ellen Hamaker is an internationally renowned expert in the field of dynamic modelling in psychology and related fields. She has received multiple prestigious grants (Talent, VENI, VIDI, Aspasia) from the Dutch Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) for innovative research projects. Her mission to build bridges between quantitative techniques and substantive psychology is illustrated by the fact that—in addition to publishing in key journals in the field of methods and statistics, including Psychological Methods, Structural Equation Modeling, Multivariate Behavioral Research, and Psychometrika—she has also published in journals from diverse substantive fields, including Journal of Research in Personality, Emotion Review, and Journal of Family Psychology. Her publications and presentations are often praised for their clarity and didactical nature, as well as their technical soundness.

Hamaker’s potential to impact the practices in the social and behavioural sciences is illustrated by her 2015 paper in Psychological Methods on the limitations of the traditional cross-lagged panel model and how to overcome these: It has been declared a “highly cited paper” (top 1%) in the field of Psychiatry/Psychology by Web of Science (which takes both the number of citations and time since publication into account); and it is changing the way researchers analyse cross-lagged panel data. Key factors that add to the success of this paper are that: a) it targets a modelling issue that is common in the social and behavioural sciences; b) it provides a clear solution that is easy to implement; and c) substantive researchers see the theoretical potential.

Since late 2015, she has been collaborating with Bengt Muthén and Tihomir Asparouhov from the software company Mplus to develop and implement dynamic structural equation modelling (DSEM). DSEM in Mplus version 8 was released on April 20, 2017, and greatly improves the access to the intensive longitudinal techniques Hamaker and others have been working on over the past ten years. Given the rapidly growing popularity of intensive longitudinal research, an exponential growth in the number of citations for her more recent papers on DSEM in Mplus as well as her overview papers can be expected.

In terms of leadership, Hamaker has served as the head of the M&S postgraduate training in Utrecht since 2013. During this time, the number of courses provided by the M&S department has more than doubled, attracting several hundred national and international participants every year. Currently M&S is the largest course provider within the Summer School Utrecht. Furthermore, Hamaker has supervised multiple master projects, PhD projects, and postdoc projects. The people she supervised have gone on to have successful careers, mostly in academia.

International visibility, activities, prizes, scholarships etc.
  • Hamaker has 50 international peer reviewed publications (including 42 articles and 8 book chapters). She is first author on 22 publications (i.e., 44%), and 36 of her publications (i.e., 72%) have 3 or fewer authors, reflecting her substantial involvement in and contribbution to these publications. She has written invited papers for: Current Directions in Psychological Science; Multivariate Behavioral Research; Assessment; and Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives.
  • She has a strong national and international network with substantive and quantitative researchers, as shown by collaborations with researchers from the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, the UK, the USA, Japan, and Australia.
  • She has an ongoing collaboration with the software company Mplus to develop and implement dynamic structural equation modelling (DSEM) for intensive longitudinal data analyses. She has taught workshops with the Mplus team at Modern Modeling Methods (M3) in 2016, the 8th Mplus Users Meeting in 2017, the International Meeting of the Psychometric Society (IMPS) in 2017, and at Johns Hopkins in 2017. They have also presented webinars together for the American Statistical Association (ASA) and the Prevention Science and Methodology Group (PSMG).
  • She has served as the Head of the Methodology Track for the Convention of the Association for Psychological Science (APS) from 2011 to 2013, and she has been a member of the Programme Committee for the International Convention of Psychological Science (ICPS) in 2015.
  • She has been an invited speaker at international meetings, including: International Meeting of the Psychometric Society (IMPS) in 2009 and 2016; Max Planck Institure in Berlin (2016); Jean Piaget Society (JPS) Conference in 2018; European Conference Developmental Psychology (2019).
  • She has taught invited workshops on time series analysis, dynamic multilevel modelling, strucutral equation modelling, and dynamic structural equation modelling at diverse international meetings, including: Society of Ambulatory Assessment (SAA) in 2013; Network on Intrapersonal Research in Education (NIRE) in 2015; Convention of the Association for Psychological Science (APS) in 2016.
  • Hamaker has been Associate Editor for the journal Mutlivariate Behavioral Research (MBR), and currently serves as a member of the Advisory Council for the journal Advances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science. She regularly reviews for both statistical and methodological journals, and for substantive journals.
5 key publications coordinating researcher / PI
  1. Asparouhov T, Hamaker EL, Muthén B. Dynamic structural equation models. Structural Equation Modeling: A Multidisciplinary Journal 2018, 25, 359-388.
  2. Hamaker EL, Wichers M. No time like the present: Discovering the hidden dynamics in intensive longitudinal data. Current Directions in Psychological Science 2017, 26, 10–15.
  3. Schuurman NK, Ferrer E, de Boer-Sonnenschein M, Hamaker EL. How to compare cross-lagged associations in a multilevel autoregressive model. Psychological Methods 2016, 21, 206-221.
  4. Hamaker EL, Kuiper RM, Grasman RPPP. A critique of the cross-lagged panel model. Psychological Methods 2015, 20, 102-116.
  5. Hamaker EL. Why researchers should think “within-person”: A paradigmatic rationale. Invited chapter for: M. R. Mehl & T. S. Conner (Eds.). Handbook of Research Methods for Studying Daily Life, 2012, 43-61, New York, NY: Guilford Publications.