Addiction Specialist, Dr. Eric Broekaert Dies

Eric Broekaert, a full Professor and Head of the Department of Special Education at Ghent University (Belgium) died suddenly Wednesday, Sept. 28, in Rome (Italy). Eric Broekaert was in Rome, to attend the 16th EWODOR Symposium, held the previous week. He was 65.


Dr.  Broekaert had extensive experience with a variety of national and international research projects on educational interventions for adults with substance abuse problems and children with emotional and behavioural disorders. He had obtained his PhD with a study on ‘the drug-free therapeutic community as a new approach of orthopedagogical intervention’ and founded the first Therapeutic Community in Belgium (De Kiem, 1976).

Dr.  Broekaert  acted as ‘ad hoc’ reviewer for various scientific journals and was co-editor of the International Journal of Therapeutic Communities. He acted as scientific expert in several EU- and UN-projects and was co-founder of the European Working Group on Drugs Oriented Research (EWODOR), which 16th Symposium he had attended the previous week, and of the European Federation of Therapeutic Communities (EFTC). He was chairman of the Orthopedagogical Observation and Treatment Centre in Ghent and of EWODOR. Dr.  Broekaert  had organized several national and international conferences, and delivered a number of invited keynote presentations, of which the most prestigious were at the Great Amphitheatre of the Sorbonne, Paris (2008), in Keble College at the University of Oxford (2011) and at the Royal College of Psychiatry of the University of London (2013).

Dr. Broekaert  was actively involved in a variety of national and international research projects concerning Substance Abuse Treatment and had authored numerous scientific publications (an overview of all publications can be found here)

Eric was a friend of Dianova’s, a man of conviction and vision, totally dedicated to his work. Working with him to organize the EWODOR symposium has been an honor, and he contributed to make it a real success. Thank you Eric, you’ll be sorely missed.