Lex Bouter was born in Rotterdam in 1956. After obtaining a MSc degree in Medical Biology at Utrecht University in 1982, he lectured at teacher training colleges in Tilburg and Utrecht. In 1984 he joined Maastricht University, where he was trained as an epidemiologist and obtained his PhD. In 1988 he published a textbook on epidemiology, the seventh revised Dutch edition of which appeared in 2016 and the first English edition in 2018.
In 1992 Bouter took up a tenured position as Professor of Epidemiology and became Scientific Director of the EMGO+ Institute for Health and Care Research at the VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam (1992-2006). He was Editor (1996-2002) and Editor-in-Chief (2002-2006) of the Cochrane Collaboration Back Review Group.
From 2001 until 2006 he additionally chaired of one of the six divisions at the VU University Medical Center. He was president of the Netherlands Epidemiological Society (1996-1997), member of the Health Council of the Netherlands (2001-2013), vice-chair and chief methodologist of the Dutch Central Committee on Research involving Human Subjects (2001-2013), and chair of the program committee of the Innovative Medical Devices Initiative (2009-2018) of Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development, and chair of the program committee for Replication Studies (since 2016) of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research.
From 2006 until 2013 he was Rector Magnificus of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. In this function he focused on the formation of interdisciplinary research institutes. As rector Lex pleaded for attention for the societal impact of research and became interested in the dilemmas around research integrity.
In 2014 his tenured professorship was broadened to Methodology and Integrity. He is currently involved in teaching and research regarding responsible conduct of research. In 2017 Bouter was appointed as member of the Council for Medical Research of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2017 he organized and co-chaired the 5th World Conference on Research Integrity in Amsterdam and became chair of the World Conferences on Research Integrity Foundation.
Lex Bouter is author or co-author of 711 scientific publications contained in the Web of Science, which have been cited close to 64,000 times leading to a WoS h-index of 125 and a Google Scholar h-index of 170. He has supervised 76 PhD students, of whom to date 16 were appointed as professor.
Areas of expertise
Methodology and Integrity: responsible conduct of research, questionable research practices and research misconduct.