Rachel Dijkstra is a PhD researcher at the International Victimology Institute of Tilburg University. She has a background in legal research (LL.B., LL.M.) with a focus on victimology, health care law, and transitional justice. Rachel has previously worked as a lecturer and junior-researcher at Utrecht University, for which she received the Teacher Talent Award '16/'17 from the Law Faculty and  she was among the three final nominees for the Teacher Talent Award '17/'18 from Utrecht University.

Rachel is currently conducting PhD research, which is funded by the Impact Program of Tilburg University. Her research seeks to assess the way different procedures concerning situations when 'things went wrong' in health care are experienced by  patients/clients and professionals. The research has an interdisciplinary and empirical orientation and uses insights from victimology, law and health care sciences.


Rachel's doctoral research project is called "How to place people before process: Participant's experiences with procedures in health care in case of incidents, calamities or medical errors".  Procedures after an incident, calamity or medical error in health care organizations show a mismatch between the purpose and presumptions underlying these procedures and the expectations of patients. In addition, research shows that professionals feel criminalized and victimized in disciplinary procedures and it is unclear whether the health care procedures improve practice.  Rachel's dissertation aims to further the understanding of these health care procedures and their stakeholders and apply lessons learned from other fields of law. 


2019-2020 Theories and Perspectives on Victimization

2019-2020 Master Thesis Victimology & Criminal Justice


Interview Docent in the Picture: Rachel Dijkstra

Recent publications

  1. Hoe ziekenhuizen patiënten en/of naasten betrekken na een calamiteit

    Friele, R., Dijkstra, R., & Knap, L. (2023). Hoe ziekenhuizen patiënten en/of naasten betrekken na een calamiteit.
  2. Documentatie van mensenrechtenschendingen in Myanmar - Het potentieel…

    Dijkstra, R. (Author). (2022). Documentatie van mensenrechtenschendingen in Myanmar: Het potentieel voor waarheidsvinding en aansprakelijkheidsstelling. Web publication/site, .
  3. Medical dispute committees in the Netherlands - A qualitative study o…

    Dijkstra, R., Elbers, N., Friele, R., & Pemberton, A. (2022). Medical dispute committees in the Netherlands: A qualitative study of patient expectations and experiences. BMC Health Services Research, 22, Article 650.
  4. Patients at the centre after a health care incident - A scoping revie…

    Dijkstra, R. I., Roodbeen, R. T. J., Bouwman, R. J. R., Pemberton, A., & Friele, R. (2022). Patients at the centre after a health care incident: A scoping review of hospital strategies targeting communication and nonmaterial restoration. Health Expectations, 25(1), 264-275.
  5. Multi-layered civil society documentation of human rights violations …

    Matelski, M., Dijkstra, R., & McGonigle Leyh, B. (2022). Multi-layered civil society documentation of human rights violations in Myanmar: The potential for accountability and truth-telling. Journal of Human Rights Practice, 1-25. Advance online publication.

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