Willeke van Staalduinen (Co-Founder) is political scientist (MSc. University of Leiden) and was a nurse in practice in mental healthcare for several years. After graduation at the university, Willeke continued her working career as personal assistant of a member of the Dutch First Chamber of Parliaments and became policy advisor on healthcare policy of the social-liberal democratic party D66 in the Second Chamber. Here she learned the working of Dutch healthcare system, initiated new legislation or initiatives on revision of the healthcare system and euthanasia legislation, prepared responses to proposed governmental legislation by involving stakeholders and networks. She was elected member of the municipality council of Alphen aan den Rijn. After several years in Parliament, Willeke switched her career to a governmental agency, the Netherlands Board for Healthcare Institutions. Here she was actively involved in performing executive checks on announced policy measures by the Ministry of Health and performed research and initiated new executive measures on long term care facilities, domotics and independent living solutions.
Then she moved to the Dutch large research organisation TNO. Here she worked as senior researcher on the development of age-friendly environments and started to build up her European network. As partner of the AFE-INNOVNET project she was at the base of the launch of the Covenant on Demographic Change; Towards an age-friendly Europe. To prepare the launch she worked on the development the Social Economic Environmental Impact Assessment Tool, user-friendly design and end-user involvement (2015).
Since she left TNO in 2016, she worked as self-employed researcher and co-founded AFEdemy in 2017. She was assigned by the Municipality of The Hague to involve the international networks in the Age-friendly Cities Conference organized by the Municipality (2017). She worked for Cáritas Diocesana de Coimbra on the end-user requirements of the H2020 SmartWork suite for older office workers, caregivers and employers (2019). Also she temporarily worked at the Municipality of The Hague to perform a performance audit on the efficiency and efficacy of the public communication and information department of the municipality (2018).
As co-founder of AFEdemy in 2017, she currently works on several European projects as coordinator or partner. She is active member and co-coordinator of European networks and COST Actions: Stakeholders Network Smart Healthy Age-Friendly Environments and European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing, D4 Action Group Age-friendly buildings, cities and environments. Actively involved in COST Action NET4AGEFRIENDLY – International Interdisciplinary Network on Smart Healthy Age-friendly Environments (CA19136), GOODBROTHER – Network on Privacy-Aware Audio- and Video-Based Applications for Active and Assisted Living (CA19121) and SHELDON – Indoor living space improvement: Smart Habitat for the Elderly (CA16226).