Nicolas Van der Linden

PhD, lecturer in social and cultural psychology

Monitoring and Evaluation Manager , Modus Vivendi asbl , Drug checking

Brussels, Belgium


My name is Nicolas Van der Linden and I am presently 1) part-time lecturer at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Center for Social and Cultural Psychology and 2) Monitoring and Evaluation Manager at Modus Vivendi asbl, a non-profit organization based in Brussels providing harm reduction services for people who use drugs. As Monitoring and Evaluation Manager, I have also conducted both quantitative and qualitative research to investigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on drug use and I am playing a pivotal role for our drug checking project, serving as a liaison to the TEDI network. I have an extensive experience in research, data curation, including data analysis, teaching and project management. I enjoy using my skills to contribute to the promotion of public health and human rights (and against the stigmatization of people who use drugs). I graduated from the ULB in 2011 with a PhD in Social Psychology. More recently, I have participated in the EMCDDA 2021 Summer School and in the Pompidou Group’s International Drug Policy Academy Executive Course on Drug Policy.

Drug Checking - From guerrilla to government agent: the full spectrum of drug checking services: Introduction to the symposium

Members of the TEDI network have spearheaded the edition of a special issue on drug checking to be published in Drugs, Habits and Social Policy. Several articles from this special issue will be presented during the symposium, which will address the following aspects of drug checking: the role of drug checking in monitoring the drug market and in identifying and documenting the composition and effects of new products; the advantages and difficulties of comparing data from different drug checking services; the operational and advocacy aspects involved in setting up a drug checking service in a prohibitionist context; the added value of drug checking in the context of festivals; and the barriers to access. The symposium is also open to contributions from services not involved in the special issue, which will focus on the legislative aspects of drug checking.