School of Social and Political Science

Mental health and wellbeing


Mental health and wellbeing across the lifecourse and across the globe

Our research looks at mental health and wellbeing across the lifecourse and across the globe.

We are interested in how legal and support systems define and monitor mental health and at how social work and other services can support people who experience mental distress.

We ask:

  • How are mental health law, policy and practice framed and what approaches can we develop that are inclusive and uphold human and citizenship rights?
  • How can we better understand the lived experience of mental distress and co-produce knowledge with different groups of people?
  • How can we safeguard adults, including those who experience mental health distress, from harm?
  • How does childhood adversity affect mental health and wellbeing in adult life?


  • Global Mental Health
  • Mental Health Law
  • Childhood Adversity
  • Well-being
  • Relationship-building
Research staff and PhD students

PhD students

  • Lauren Lamberton: “The use of digital technology in delivering mental health provision for children and young people in the United Kingdom”
  • Pascal Rudin: “Helping the 'Problem Child' Become Loveable Again? A Discourse Analysis on Childhood ADHD in Switzerland and Implications for Social Work” 
  • Sarah Rose Social Workers and Emotional Resilience


Additional information
  • (Devaney, J.) 2020-2021 The mental health and wellbeing of youth in care and care-leavers: Development of a national collaborative research agenda. Funded by the Medical Research Council.
  • (Devaney, J.) 2019-2022 Addressing the trauma-related distress of young people in care: A randomised feasibility trial across social-care and mental health services. Funded by the NIHR.
  • (Devaney, J.) 2017-2020 Identifying and Responding to the Trauma of Maltreated Children: a screening study and a feasibility trial of trauma-informed cognitive therapy. Funded by the NSPCC and ESRC.
  • (Meinck, F.) ERC Starting Grant 2019 (2020-2025): Interrupting intergenerational violence transmission: a mixed-methods three-generational longitudinal study in South Africa (INTERRUPT_VIOLENCE). Principal Investigator, collaboration with colleagues at University of the Witwatersrand School of Public Health. Young Carers SA
  • (Meinck, F.) Global Challenges Research Fund (2019-2024): Accelerating Achievement for Africa's Adolescents Hub. Co-Investigator with colleagues at North-West University. The UKRI GCRF Accelerating Achievement for Africa’s Adolescents Hub
  • (Meinck, F.) Australian National health and Medical Research Council (2019-2023): The first national study of child abuse and neglect in Australia: prevalence, health outcomes, and burden of disease. Co-Investigator with colleagues at Queensland University of Technology. The Australian Child Maltreatment Study 
  • Mental Health and Care Experienced Children and Young People: A partnership for change, with Dr Autumn Roesch-Marsh, University of Edinburgh, 439 West Lothian Champion’s Board, Who Carers Scotland and IRISS. College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Knowledge Exchange and Impact Grant. December 2019 – December 2021.
  • Exploring views on elder abuse in Scotland, with Professor Lynn Jamieson, University of Edinburgh and Hourglass Scotland (formerly Action on Elder Abuse). October 2019 – September 2020.

Related people and projects