Brenda Penninx is a multidisciplinary researcher. Her aim in both her research and her teaching is to better understand the consequences and treatment of psychiatric disorders. In her research, she integrates genetics and neuroimaging with clinical, psychological and social science approaches. She also has considerable administrative experience, for example as a member of the management teams for the department of Psychiatry and for the Amsterdam Neuroscience and Amsterdam Public Health research institutes, and as a lead investigator of large-scale, Dutch and international multi-site research consortiums.
Penninx became a member of the Academy in 2016. She chairs the Medical Sciences Council and is vice chairperson of the Medical, Biomedical and Health Sciences domain. As vice president, she intends to focus on encouraging and facilitating interdisciplinary cooperation in science, for example with respect to climate change and open science. She also plans to engage in discussions about stability and regularity in science, with Recognition and Rewards, science communication and science funding as important themes.