dr. T.J.L. van Rompay (Thomas)

Universitair hoofddocent

Over mij

Thomas van Rompay is an Associate Professor at the Department of Communication Science of the University of Twente (UT) in the Netherlands. He has a background in cognitive psychology. After obtaining his master degree at Leiden University, he pursued his PhD at Delft Technical University, Department of Industrial Design Engineering. Specifically, he studied design experience from an embodied cognition perspective, investigating how design communicates meaning and affect. Since 2005, he works at The University of Twente.

His current research projects take place on the threshold of design and psychology where he studies influences of environmental design (and ‘green’ / natural stimuli in particular) and technology on health and wellbeing, and the potential of innovations in packaging design (multisensory design and 3D printing) for promoting responsible (food and beverage) consumption.

In addition, Van Rompay collaborates in multi-disciplinary projects in order to develop design and technology for people with health challenges, amongst others in ZonMW's "Growing Roots: Connecting Elderly through Virtual Nature Spaces", in Horizon 2020's "MinD: Designing for people with Dementia" and in Connecting Industries' (Top Technology Twente) “Digital Nature - Enhancing patient care & control” (in collaboration with Philips Research])".

At the UT, he participates in tech-inspired programs in close collaboration with BMSLAB and teaches and works at the University’s DesignLab where he is a DL-fellow.


Business & Economics
Brand Evaluation
Product Design
Medicine & Life Sciences
Product Packaging
Self Disclosure



In this line, Thomas van Rompay focuses on the impact of healing environments and nature-based design elements on (mental) health and wellbeing. In this context, he is interested in the role of emergent technologies (including AR and VR) which offer tremendous opportunities for transforming static, ‘old-school’ environments into flexible and dynamic healing environments which can be aligned with specific needs of specific people. It is this fusion of design and technology which opens up endless opportunities to create adaptable and sustainable environments. For instance, in recent publications, the potential of creative (interactive) design solutions for frail elderly and people with dementia is described.


The idea here is that we can boost taste and attractiveness of healthy food options through design and product/packaging innovations. In doing so, we contribute to a healthy lifestyle which is crucial when it comes to prevention of disease later in life. To illustrate: overweight is heavily influenced by dietary and lifestyle factors (especially consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and poor diet quality) and, in its turn, being overweight is an important risk factor for type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and certain types of cancers. Several of his recent publications stress the potential of 3D-printed surface textures for promoting healthy food choices in particular (for which Van Rompay collaborates with Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology - KAIST).





Niedderer, K., Holthoff-Detto, V. , Van Rompay, T. J. L. , Karahanoglu, A. , Ludden, G. D. S., Almeida, R., Durán, R. L., Aguado, Y. B., Lim, J. N. W., Smith, T., Harrison, D., Craven, M. P., Gosling, J., Orton, L., & Tournier, I. (2022). This is Me: Evaluation of a boardgame to promote social engagement, wellbeing and agency in people with dementia through mindful life-storytelling. Journal of aging studies, 60, [100995]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaging.2021.100995
Lim, J. N. W., Niedderer, K., Tournier, I., Almeida, R., Harrison, D., Holthoff-Detto, V. , Ludden, G. , van Rompay, T. , van der Voort, M., Galansinska, A., Smith, T., Lasada, R., Aguado, Y. B., Druschke, D., Berit, Z., & Zanasi, M. (2021). Assessing the generalisability of a multicentre qualitative dementia research: the experience and challenges faced by the MinD project in Europe. Open Research Europe, 1, [1:64]. https://doi.org/10.12688/openreseurope.13700.1, https://doi.org/10.12688/openreseurope.13700.2, https://doi.org/10.12688/openreseurope.13700.3
van Houwelingen-Snippe, J. , van Rompay, T. J. L., & Allouch, S. B. (2020). Feeling connected after experiencing digital nature: A survey study. International journal of environmental research and public health, 17(18), [6879]. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186879
Oltvoort, A. , de Vries, P. , van Rompay, T. , & Rosen, D. (2019). “I Am the Eye in the Sky – Can You Read My Mind?” How to Address Public Concerns Towards Drone Use. In K. T. Win, H. Oinas-Kukkonen, P. Karppinen, E. Karapanos, & E. Kyza (Eds.), Persuasive Technology: Development of Persuasive and Behavior Change Support Systems: 14th International Conference, PERSUASIVE 2019, Proceedings (pp. 103-114). (Lecture Notes in Computer Science; Vol. 11433). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-17287-9_9
Voorn, R., van der Veen, G. , van Rompay, T. J. L. , Hegner, S. M. , & Pruyn, A. T. H. (2018). The Importance of Values for Brand Purchase: A Managerial Contribution: An Abstract. In Marketing Transformation: Marketing Practice in an Ever Changing World: Proceedings of the 2017 Academy of Marketing Science (AMS) World Marketing Congress (WMC) (pp. 217-218). (Developments in Marketing Science: Proceedings of the Academy of Marketing Science). Springer Nature Switzerland AG. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-68750-6_64
van Rompay, T. J. L. , & Fennis, B. M. (2018). Full-bodied taste: On the embodied origins of product perception and sensory evaluation. In C. Velasco, & C. Spence (Eds.), Multisensory Packaging: Designing New Product Experiences (pp. 163-190). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-94977-2_7
Fenko, A. , & van Rompay, T. J. L. (2018). Consumer-Driven product design. In G. Ares, & P. Varela (Eds.), Methods in Consumer Research, Volume 2: Alternative Approaches and Special Applications (pp. 427-462). Elsevier. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-08-101743-2.00018-2

Pure Link


Thomas van Rompay teaches in multi-disciplinary courses in which relationships between design & technology and societal challenges take centre stage, such as:

MA course ‘Design and Behavior Change’ (in collaboration with ET-IDE).

The goal of this course is to connect theory and practice and come up with a concept/prototype of a design intervention in the context of a specific societal challenge (e.g., active lifestyle promotion). Students work in mixed teams (CS/IDE/HMI) with the goal to enable a multidisciplinary perspective on current societal issues.

BA course ‘Communication by Design’

Focus in this bachelor course is on communication by means of creative technology (VR technology as a way to immerse people in restorative environments with the goal to enhance performance and wellbeing) and/or multisensory design (packaging design to promote healthy food consumption and healthy lifestyle development).

MA course ‘Societal Challenges’

Goal of this course is to engage students with stakeholders in the context of a specific (NWO/EU-based) societal challenge (e.g., green energy transition, mobile technology use and social dynamics, healthy living). It includes reflection on the role of communication in the specific challenge at stake. Through this course, we aim to complement students’ academic skills and mindset with an acute sense of where and how communication professionals can make a difference in the world of tomorrow.

Verbonden aan Opleidingen



Vakken Collegejaar  2021/2022

Vakken in het huidig collegejaar worden toegevoegd op het moment dat zij definitief zijn in het Osiris systeem. Daarom kan het zijn dat de lijst nog niet compleet is voor het gehele collegejaar.

Vakken Collegejaar  2020/2021


Van Rompay collaborates in multi-disciplinary projects in order to develop design and technology for people with health challenges, amongst others in:

- ZonMW - Create Health: "Growing Roots: Connecting Elderly through Virtual Nature Spaces".

- Connecting Industries (Top Technology Twente): Digital Nature - Enhancing patient care & control

- Horizon 2020's "MinD: Designing for people with Dementia".

At the UT, he participates in tech-inspired programs in close collaboration with BMSLAB and the University’s DesignLab where he is a DL-fellow.

In de Pers



Universiteit Twente
Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Cubicus (gebouwnr. 41), kamer C208
De Zul 10
7522NJ  Enschede

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Universiteit Twente
Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Cubicus  C208
Postbus 217
7500 AE Enschede


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