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Personal profile

Biography

I completed my undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of New England in 2006. While I was very interested in social psychology research at the time, I ended up working in various clinical roles across juvenile justice and community mental health. During this time, I noticed that individual work didn’t seem to be enough for some people and that any individual changes in a person could be hard to maintain if they were living in a setting that didn’t support those changes. I became increasingly interested in working with families and social networks, which led me to complement my clinical work with a Masters of Couple and Family Therapy through the University of New South Wales. I was particularly inspired and interested in approaches such as Open Dialogue which seemed to combine a systemic and a humanistic collaborative perspective.

Through my clinical work with Open Dialogue, I became increasingly curious about what conversational elements constituted a helpful dialogical interaction. This led me to starting a PhD in 2017 where I studied Open Dialogue sessions in a child and youth mental health service using Conversation Analysis. Conversation Analysis introduced me to a new way of thinking about interactions based on how people utilise various conversational practices to negotiate and achieve social actions. This was quite a change for me as in my clinical role I had focussed heavily on a person’s internal mental state.

Since my PhD graduation in 2021, I have left clinical work after 17 years to join Monash University as a Research Fellow with Prof Niels Buus. I hope to continue researching interactions in mental health as well as health communication with families more generally and to make connections with other researchers.

Research interests

  • Conversation analysis
  • Qualitative research
  • Interactions in health and mental health
  • Family therapy
  • Open Dialogue

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, University of Sydney

Award Date: 10 Dec 2021

Family Therapy, Master of Couple and Family Therapy, University of New South Wales (UNSW)

Award Date: 18 Dec 2013

Psychology, Bachelor of Psychology with Honours (Class 1), University of New England (Australia)

Award Date: 1 Apr 2006

Research area keywords

  • Mental Health
  • Family Therapy
  • Open Dialogue
  • Conversation analysis

Network

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