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Professor of Medicine in the Center for Healthy Ageing, University of Copenhagen

Professor Rudi Westendorp was trained at the Leiden University Medical Centre (LUMC) in the Netherlands, and specialised in intensive care and epidemiology. Later, he focussed on geriatrics and gerontology. In 2000, he was appointed professor of medicine, and, from 2005 to 2012, he was head of the Department of Gerontology and Geriatrics at the LUMC. In 2008, he founded and became the first director of the Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing, a research institute that provides training, conducts research, and initiates developments in the field of vitality and ageing. In addition, since 2012, he has been director of the VITALITY! programme, part of Medical Delta, an innovative partnership of academic and public institutions, and enterprises, in the south-west of the Netherlands. In 2015, he moved his workplace to Denmark, where he was appointed Professor of Old-Age Medicine at the University of Copenhagen.

Rudi Westendorp (1959) studied medicine at the Leiden University, became a consultant in intensive care medicine and epidemiology, and in a later stage dedicated himself into geriatrics and gerontology. In 2000 he was appointed full professor at the Leiden University Medical Center and became chair of the department of old age medicine. As such he acquainted and successfully executed ample national and European grants, published more than 600 original articles with an h-index of 70+, and supervised over 50 PhD students of which three of them have been appointed full professor. Since 2007 he became the founding director of Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing that conducts research, provides education and pursues societal innovations to advance the quality of life of older people. From 2012 he chaired the VITALITY! program of Medical Delta, a consortium of the universities and municipalities of Leiden, Delft and Rotterdam. He was endowed doctor honoris causa by the University of Newcastle, UK (2009), and received a knighthood in the order of the Dutch Lion (2014). From 2015 onwards he moved office to Copenhagen University, Denmark at which he is appointed professor of Medicine at Old age at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences.


  • –present
    Professor, University of Copenhagen