Decolonising research in clinical psychology: a qualitative exploration of trainee and staff perspectives

Dafni Katsampa, Roshni Panchal, Jacqui Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Research in clinical psychology to date is condemned for adhering to a colonial mentality. This is often an unavoidable consequence of operating within colonial academic structures and a scientific field historically informed by dominant
Western narratives. The decolonisation of research encompasses the deconstruction of colonial approaches and generation of novel ideas. This qualitative study aims to capture perspectives on decolonising research in Doctorate of Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy) programmes in the UK. Trainee clinical psychologists and staff members participated in focus groups and interviews. Data was thematically analysed. Participants discussed the meaning-making of the term ‘decolonisation’ within and outside the field, perceived individual and systemic barriers on decolonising research in clinical training and post-qualification, and practical steps scientist-practitioners can follow to embody the ethos of decolonisation in their research. Concluding, the findings reveal that decolonising DClinPsy research is a nuanced, complex, and emotive area. Future research should focus on disentangling language and terminology on ‘decolonisation’ in colonial structures and exploring the application of liberation practices within academic and healthcare settings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-44
Number of pages9
JournalClinical Psychology Forum
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2023


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