Public launch seminar of International Centre for Mental Health Social Research

Posted on 27 June 2014

Associate Professor Lynette Joubert from the University of Melbourne gave a lecture on Tuesday 24th June 2014 to publicly launch the International Centre for Mental Health Social Research.

Public launch of International Centre for Mental Health Social Research

Dr Martin Webber speaking at the launch of the International Centre for Mental Health Social Research. Introducing the speaker Dr Lynette Joubert from the Uniersity of Melbourne.

The International Centre for Mental Health Social Research (ICMHSR) was publicly launched at a lecture given by Associate Professor Lynette Joubert, University of Melbourne, last Tuesday evening.

In front of a packed auditorium in the Alcuin Research Resource Centre, Dr Martin Webber (pictured), ICMHSR Director, introduced Dr Joubert who argued that we can improve our mental health by paying more attention to our social circumstances. She presented her recent study which found that brief social work interventions reduce the incidence of self-harm and severity of depression. She argued that naturally-occurring social networks can be supported and enhanced to enrich an individual’s life and support their recovery from mental health problems.

‘Social networks and communities’ is one of ICMHSR’s research themes. Speaking of ICMHSR’s collaboration with the University of Melbourne, ICMHSR Director Dr Martin Webber said: “We are pleased to be working with Dr Joubert and her team to develop and evaluate social interventions which can help people to enhance their social networks. This research is urgently needed to provide evidence to inform mental health social work practice.”

We are pleased to be working with Dr Joubert and her team to develop and evaluate social interventions which can help people to enhance their social networks. This research is urgently needed to provide evidence to inform mental health social work practice.

Dr Martin Webber

Supported by a grant from the University of York Distinguished Visitors Fund, Dr Joubert travelled from Australia to spend time to collaborate with ICMHSR researchers at York. Speaking about her work with Dr Webber over the past year, she said “Our collaboration exists on multiple levels. This includes writing proposals for competitive funding, encouraging postgraduate research students from both campuses and engaging with mental health practitioners around research. This has also extended to a global classroom where Martin participated in a practice research class that I was teaching at the University of Melbourne via skype.”

At the public launch of ICMHSR, Professor Nick Ellison, Head of the Department of Social Policy and Social Work, talked about the importance of international research in the Department and how it helps to inform UK social policy and social work practice. ICMHSR brings together researchers from the University of York and international collaborators to develop a unique programme of research.

A diverse audience of interested members of the public, providers and users of mental health services, practitioners and researchers attended the lecture and reception which followed it. Many wanted to be added to our mailing list. If you wish to find out more about our future events, seminars or publications, please contact rachel.mcallister@york.ac.uk and ask to be added to the ICMHSR mailing list. Additionally, you can subscribe to our blog at www.icmhsr.org/ to automatically receive updates about our work.