Last Wednesday 7th of November, the London Constituency celebrated their Science and Mental Health Roundtable on the wellbeing and mental health of researchers in academia. The event gathered Dr Catherine Lichten, Gedminte Mikulenaite and Dr Roland Zahn, who talked about the impact of mental health disorders in academia, the neurobiology behind them, and the strategies that the universities should put in place to help their staff.
Dr Lichten warned about the high incidence of mental health disorders among researchers and the low percentage actually diagnosed, with career instability and competition as the main culprits. Ms Mikulenaite also stressed the lack of wellbeing in university students – who suffer from high suicidal rates as well – but announced that there are current plans exploring new ways to address mental health problems in students in higher education institutions, and that the first results would be known next year (fingers crossed for the best outcome!). Finally, Dr Zahn explored guilt and its links to depression, and explained that neurofeedback training may be a solution to educate our brains, rebalance blame and improve self-esteem.
Last, our speakers engaged in a very exciting debate, and the audience proved to be very engaged in the following Q&A section. Drinks and networking followed, where lots of advice on how to take care of our wellbeing followed: read, take up a hobby, go for an invigorating walk, and above all talk to friends and seek help!
Dr Catherine Lichten explaining the causes of mental health disorders in researchers
Ms Gedminte Mikulenaite addressing questions from the audience
Dr Roland Zahn on the neurological physiology of guilt and self-blaming
The SRUK London constituency is pleased to present this free to attend event on the wellbeing and mental health of researchers in academia.
We will have three outstanding experts followed by Q&A and a collaborative roundtable. We will listen about the most usual mental health disorders that affect researchers in academia, the neurobiology behind them, and the strategies that many universities are setting up to help their staff. This will be a great opportunity to evaluate your own wellbeing, learn about the tools available to support you, and raise awareness of mental health disorders among your colleagues.
17:30 – 17:50 Registration
17:50 – 18:00 Welcome and Introduction by Dr Larissa Zárate García (Vice-director, London Constituency, SRUK). Chaired by Dr David Manuel Gutiérrez Estévez.
18:00 – 18:25 “Mental health of researchers: a review of the evidence” by Dr Catherine Lichten, Senior Analyst, RAND Europe
18:25 – 18:50 “Whole university approach to mental health” by Gedminte Mikulenaite, Policy Researcher, Universities UK
18:50 – 19:15 “Balancing blame and guilt: lessons from depression and brain imaging” by Dr Roland Zahn, Reader in the Neurocognitive Bases of Mood Disorders, King´s College London
19:15 – 20:00 Roundtable/discussion/Q&A
20:00 – 21:00 Nibbles, Drinks and Networking
WHERE: Drayton House, 30 Gordon Street, Lecture theatre B03, London, WC1H 0AN
WHEN: Wednesday 7 November 2018, 18:00 – 21:00 GMT