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Gent, Belgium

University College Ghent is the largest university college in Flanders, with three faculties, one School of Arts and 13,000 students. Its establishment in 1995 is the outcome of two successful mergers that involved sixteen Belgian institutions of higher education. Many had been influential leaders in higher education for several decades. The current faculties are spread over the city center of Ghent and Aalst. Wikipedia.

Rombaut L.,University College Ghent
Arthritis care & research | Year: 2012

To investigate the passive properties of the plantar flexors muscle-tendon tissue in patients with the hypermobility type of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS-HT). Twenty-five women with EDS-HT and 25 sex- and age-matched healthy control subjects participated in the study. Passive resistive torque (PRT) of the plantar flexors was measured with an isokinetic dynamometer during 2 standardized stretch protocols to obtain the passive muscle tension. Protocol 1 consisted of 4 continuous cycles to a predetermined angle of 10° dorsiflexion. Protocol 2 consisted of a slow stretch to the onset of pain. Torque, angle, and electromyography were simultaneously recorded during the tests. To take muscle thickness into account, muscle cross-sectional area (MCSA) was obtained with peripheral quantitative computed tomography. Stiffness of the Achilles tendon was assessed using a dynamometer in combination with ultrasonography. The results demonstrate a significantly larger maximal joint angle in the EDS-HT patients accompanied by a similar PRT compared to the control subjects (protocol 2), indicating a lower passive muscle tension in the patient group. PRT for the predetermined angle (protocol 1) was the same for both groups and there was no difference in MSCA. Furthermore, a significantly lower Achilles tendon stiffness was seen in the patient group than in the control group. This study is the first to provide evidence for altered passive properties of the muscle-tendon unit in EDS-HT patients. These changes are thought to be associated with structural modifications in connective tissue. Copyright © 2012 by the American College of Rheumatology. Source

de Decker P.,University College Ghent
Environment and Planning A | Year: 2011

Between 1995 and 1999 the Flemish government succeeded in approving pieces of legisla- tion intended to counter the spatial developments that had characterised the preceding periods, namely suburbanisation and urban decay. It passed a law to combat vacancy and slum housing (1995), a law to invest in social urban renewal (1996), a housing law (1997), a new law on spatial planning (1999), and the first comprehensive spatial plan (1997). Unfortunately, recent information and an evaluation of the spatial planning effort reveal that these initiatives have not been successful. The suburbanisation of native Belgians did not stop: on the contrary, it is accelerating again. And the population growth in the cities is due to people coming from abroad (through family reunification or formation or as asylum seekers). In this contribution I investigate suburbanisation and deurbanisa- tion, asking why housing sprawl in Flanders is so persistent. I examine the structures behind sprawl, viewing them as the consequence of a longstanding dialectical process whereby physical artefacts interact with political choices and actions, cultural convictions, and economic possibilities that have reinforced each other in daily practice over and over again in one predominant direction. The basic argument is that Flanders' spatial planning and urban policies are locked into historical choices, making it difficult to implement new options successfully. © 2011 Pion Ltd and its Licensors. Source

De Belie F.M.L.,Ghent University | Sergeant P.,University College Ghent | Melkebeek J.A.,Ghent University
IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics | Year: 2010

The rotor position of a salient-pole permanent-magnet synchronous machine (PMSM) at standstill or rotating at low speed is often estimated by measuring the responses on high-frequency test signals. In some drives, the rotor position is computed by measuring important current ripples that are generated by supplying the PMSM periodically with high-frequency voltage test pulses. Besides these ripples, undesired distortions in the average-current samples have been measured. Simulation results have revealed that these distortions are caused by a test signal, as it produces a nonzero voltage deviation from the steady-state stator voltage. In this paper, a low-speed sensorless strategy is discussed where a strong reduction of the aforementioned distortions is obtained by adapting the test signals to the steady-state stator voltage. The main assumption is that an accurate estimation of the steady-state voltage is made by using the controller output. The computation of the adaptive test signals is done by taking into account the voltage restriction of the dc-bus voltage. Simulation results, as well as experimental measurements, indicate the effectiveness of the adaptive test signals in a sensorless controlled interior PMSM. © 2006 IEEE. Source

Devisch I.,University College Ghent
Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice | Year: 2013

Recently, a court in Belgium awarded a sum of 400 000 euros to the parents of a child with disability who at that point had already died of Sanfilippo syndrome. Their charge was not that the baby was born with disability, but that the child was born. The charge was brought in the child's name, and so effectively, the child had sued against its own birth. This so-called 'unique case' is analyzed with the work of the German philosopher Odo Marquard. Marquard's work on theodicy, and the question of suffering and evil, is very useful to explain why this case is the current apotheosis of a logic present in modernity: existence as a tribunal. This paper explains why Marquard's work sheds an interesting light on this case for today's medicine. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Source

Devisch I.,University College Ghent
Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice | Year: 2011

Rationale In this article, I argue that we need a new perspective in the debate on autonomy in medicine, to understand many of the problems we face today - dilemmas that are situated at the intersection of autonomy and heteronomy, such as why well informed and autonomous people make unhealthy lifestyle choices. If people do not choose what they want, this is not simply caused by their lack of character or capability, but also by the fact that absolute autonomy is impossible; autonomous individuals are 'contaminated' by heteronymous aspects, by influences from 'outside'. Consequently, there are many good reasons to question the widely accepted hierarchical opposition of autonomy (progress) versus heteronomy (paternalism) in medicine. In an earlier article an analysis is made of the neologism 'oughtonomy' to support the thesis that when it comes down to human existence, autonomy and heteronomy are intertwined, rather than being merely opposites. Methods In this article, I reflect upon how social conditions might improve our 'choice architecture', what Thaler & Sunstein have called 'nudging': how to change individual health choices without being paternalistic? I explore the extent to which both oughtonomy and nudging are able to challenge the question of autonomy in today's medicine. Results and conclusions Autonomy may and should be a shared target in today's medicine, but we should never forget that it is always intertwined with heteronomy. Starting from this perspective, progress in medicine demands far more than the increase of autonomy. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Source

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