EOLinPLACE is a research project led by the palliative care researcher Barbara Gomes and hosted by the University of Coimbra at the Faculty of Medicine.

Our team is international and interdisciplinary.


Barbara Gomes
Principal Investigator | PhD

Barbara Gomes is invited coordinating researcher (equivalent to full professor) at the University of Coimbra and principal investigator (PI) of the EOLinPLACE Project. She holds a first degree in Psychology and Health from University of Porto (2001), and an MSc and PhD in Palliative Care from King’s College London (2006, 2012). The aim of Barbara’s research is to proof care at the end of life, to ensure it matches people’s preferences and priorities. She has surveyed patient and family experiences with end of life care and analysed population mortality data across nations, with a focus on tackling the mismatch between where people would prefer to die and where they actually die. Barbara has published over 60 papers (H index = 27; >4000 citations in high impact journals, with first authored publications in the BMJ, Annals of Oncology and JAMA). She is currently supervising 5 PhD students.

Sílvia Lopes
Senior Researcher | PhD

Sílvia Lopes is assistant professor at the NOVA National School of Public Health (ENSP-NOVA), seconded to University of Coimbra to work on the EOLinPLACE Project. She holds a first degree in Economics from University of Coimbra (2000) and a PhD in Public Health from NOVA University Lisbon (2011). Sílvia’s main research interests are end-of-life and hospital care utilisation, risk adjustment and hospital care outcomes measurement. In the EOLinPLACE Project she is co-PI for the fieldwork in Portugal and responsible for the international comparative analysis of place of death classifications and data. At ENSP-NOVA, Silvia also teaches and supervises Masters and PhD students, together with the coordination of several courses and programs.

Elizabeth Namukwaya
Senior Researcher | PhD

Elizabeth Namukwaya is a palliative care physician, part-time researcher in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, and part-time lecturer in the Department of Medicine, Makerere University College of Health Sciences. She holds a Masters of Medicine in Internal Medicine from Makerere University (2009) and a PhD in Palliative Care from the University of Edinburgh (2016). Elizabeth’s main research interests are in improving holistic care for people with cancer and non-cancer conditions and the use of digital technology in palliative care. In the EOLinPLACE Project she is responsible for the fieldwork in Uganda and for examining the content validity of the proposed international classification of dying places. Elizabeth also teaches and supervises medical and postgraduate students.

Dorothea Touwen
Senior Researcher | PhD

Dorothea Touwen PhD is associate professor of medical ethics at Leiden University Medical Center, in the Netherlands. The focus of her research is on elderly care and end of life care. She has conducted studies on ethical complexities of proxy decision making, advance care planning and living wills; on palliative care for people from ethnic minorities; on family care giving and on dementia care. Currently she supervises a study on the balance between freedom of movement and safety in the care for people with dementia, on shared decision making with cancer patients of ethnic minorities and on the wishes and values of refugee patients. Her approach is always very practical in order for projects to lead to conclusions that are applicable in daily care. Most of her studies use qualitative research methods, thus ensuring a thorough and in depth investigation of the interests and complexities. In EOLinPLACE, Dorothea leads the ethnographic component of the project and is local co-PI in the Netherlands.

Jenny van der Steen
Senior Researcher | PhD

Jenny van der Steen is an epidemiologist and associate professor at Leiden University Medical Center and senior researcher at Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen. She studies how to improve care at the end of life, in particular for persons with dementia and their family. Her research covers palliative care including advance care planning and non-pharmacological interventions. She has been awarded national and European prizes. She aims at optimising research design, employing rigorous quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods, preferably in international comparative and with parallel methodological work. In EOLinPLACE, Jenny is collaborator and local-PI of the project in the Netherlands.

Andrea Bruno de Sousa
Posdoctoral Researcher | PhD

Andrea Bruno de Sousa is a postdoctoral researcher of the EOLinPLACE project at the University of Coimbra. She is a health psychologist with a PhD in Dynamics of Health and Welfare from Linköping University and NOVA National School of Public Health (2021). Andrea also holds a MSc in Psychology and Health from the University of the West England (2014) and a fellowship in Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disorder from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (2009). Andrea’s main research interests are complex health issues, family related subjects and lay people’s perspectives. In the EOLinPLACE project Andrea will contribute to various components of the research work, including the development of protocols and methods, data collection, analysis and writing of reports. She leads a policy document analysis of how the theme of dying places is approached in health policy in the four countries of the project (Portugal, the Netherlands, the US and Uganda).

Sara Pinto
Posdoctoral Researcher | PhD

Sara Pinto is a postdoctoral researcher of the EOLinPLACE project at the University of Coimbra. She holds a first degree in Nursing from Escola Superior de Enfermagem Dr. Ângelo da Fonseca - Coimbra (2005), a Master degree in Palliative Care (University of Porto, 2012), and a PhD in Nursing Sciences (University of Porto, 2017). Sara’s main research interests are focused in comfort, spirituality, and information and communication technologies in palliative care. In the EOLinPLACE she leads a review of the evidence on the preferences about place of end of life care and death of patients with life-threatening illnesses and their families.


Jorge Soares
Ethics advisor | PhD
Julia Downing
Pediatric palliative care expert | PhD
Marjolein Gysels
Ethnography expert | PhD

Advisory group

Irene Higginson
Chair | Professor at King's College London
Luc Deliens
Member | Professor at Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Joan Teno
Member | Professor at Brown University
Donna Wilson
Member | Professor at University of Alberta
International Children's Palliative Care Network (ICPCN)
Represented by Chief Executive Julia Downing
European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC)
Represented by President Christoph Ostgathe
International Association for Hospice & Palliative Care (IAHPC)
Represented by Chair of the Board of Directors Lukas Radbruch
International Association of Patient's Organizations (IAPO)
Represented by Chief Executive Officer Kawaldip Sehmi
Represented by Director Stecy Yghemonos

Patient and family representatives

Kawaldip Sehmi
Member | Patient representative
Stecy Yghemonos
Member | Family carer representative


NOVA National School of Public Health
Coimbra University Hospital Center
Mulago National Referral Hospital
Leiden University Medical Center
Brown University
This uses cookies that do not gather any personal information whatsoever. By using this website, you agree with the cookie policy.