TU Delft staff holding on

Nieuws - 18 februari 2021 - Communication

TU Delft is putting a great deal of effort into monitoring and improving the wellbeing of its students and staff, and IDE is playing an important role in this work. Derek Lomas, Assistant Professor of Positive AI at our faculty and the researcher behind TU Delft’s staff wellbeing assessment, has recently published the outcomes of the December 2020 survey, after the first one carried on in June.

What stands out among its findings, was realising just how resilient the TU Delft community is. While all wellbeing indicators have gone down somewhat, none of them have collapsed nor have they shown a dramatic reduction of the quality of life of staff. However, If you felt like the winter, or the pressure of working from home have lowered your energy levels, you are definitely not alone.

In discussing the survey results, Derek emphasised the key role of keeping an optimistic attitude. Indeed, self-reported optimism is one of the factors that most predicts subjective wellbeing. Derek said: “optimism enables our self-reinvention and our possibility of being the change we want to make in the world as designers, but only as long as we hang on in there!” Similarly, keeping an optimistic attitude towards ourselves can empower us to see new possibilities in our situation and imagine a positive future. Along the same lines, a creative approach to our own wellbeing might lead us to discover what resources may help our own personal wellbeing, to find out what is worth exploring, experimenting and see what works better for each one of us.

Concluding our conversation with Derek, we touched on the theme of empathy, in relation to the importance of feeling part of a community and of creating bonds and relationships even via digital tools. “On the one hand we all have this common experience, and assume we all live the same struggles (…), but it remains very hard to understand each other’s real situation without in person contacts”.

Derek’s research on wellbeing at TU Delft is also part of a bigger project on the same topic held by the 4TU consortium. Learn more about his research and on the efforts to support the student community in his blog.