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International Centre for Mental Health Social Research

I am very pleased to announce that the Centre for Mental Health Social Research is becoming an international collaborative research centre, thanks to a successful bid to the University of York Vice-Chancellor’s Initiative Fund.

The International Centre for Mental Health Social Research (ICMHSR) will receive support for three years from 2013-14 to become a self-sustaining international research centre. The ICMHSR will bring together researchers from the University of Melbourne (Australia), City University New York (USA), Roskilde University (Denmark), Public Health Foundation of India (India), University of Chicago (USA) and the University of York.

The collaboration will explore the role of social problems in the cause and course of mental health problems and will develop and evaluate innovative ways of tackling them. This will include validating research tools for use in different cultures, supporting local practice-based research, and evaluating approaches such as working with social networks and communities. ICMHSR researchers will share knowledge across boundaries with the potential for global impact.

The funding award is recognition of the significant economic and social impact of mental health problems across the world. It also recognises that more research on the effectiveness of social interventions which can support the recovery of people with mental health problems is needed.

The focus of the centre is to bring together researchers from around the world to undertake a unique research programme applying social science to mental health research. This funding is a welcome boost to the study of the social dimensions of mental health problems.

Professor Mary Maynard, Head of the Department of Social Policy and Social Work, said:

We are delighted that financial support from the Vice-Chancellor’s Fund for Collaborative International Research Centres will enable the new Centre for Mental Health Social Research to be a truly international endeavour. The Department is committed both to expanding its current work on mental health research and to international and comparative perspectives. It is exciting for the Department that these approaches are being brought together in this significant new development.

The award provides funding for me as Centre Director, a Centre Co-ordinator (Tracey Hawkes), a Research Fellow (Meredith Newlin) and a PhD scholarship. The PhD scholarship is due to commence in September 2013 and will be advertised shortly.

We will continue to host free public seminars every two months, which will increasingly feature our international collaborators. Our next seminar on Friday 12th July from 1-2pm will feature Dr Lisa Brophy from University of Melbourne / MIND Australia who will be talking about supporting people on Community Treatment Orders. This is sure to be an interesting seminar and if you are interested in coming then more information can be found here.

To find out more about our work, please contact the Centre Co-ordinator, Tracey Hawkes, or visit our website.

This announcement can be viewed on our website. The University of York will profile the ICMHSR on its homepage in a couple of weeks time.

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