Scholarships to further develop anthropological perspectives on mental health launched

SOAS anthropologists who secured a grant worth nearly £8 million to set up a new mental health research centre in London have launched new scholarship opportunities for the study of mental health and anthropology. 

The Centre for Anthropology and Mental Health Research in Action (CAMHRA) is a world-leading research centre dedicated to the anthropological study of mental health, housed within SOAS. 

Through ethnographic research, education and public engagement, CAMHRA contributes distinctly anthropological perspectives to a growing global understanding of how societies can understand and respond to mental distress and build effective systems of care. 

Centre Director Professor David Mosse said: “We know that mental healthcare is often poorly adapted to the diverse cultural worlds and needs of those who seek it. Anthropology offers relevant nuanced, relational and cultural knowledge through its uniquely participatory methods. Our approach with these scholarships is to build capacity to create new knowledge about how to reshape mental health systems.” 

The new scholarships are for the cutting-edge MA in Medical Anthropology and Mental Health and the MRes (Master’s in research) focused on mental health, which include opportunities for original research and knowledge exchange, from 2024. 

They are designed to offer opportunities for people who would not usually study anthropology or ethnographic methods due to existing time, financial and social constraints. Additionally, CAMHRA is seeking applicants from candidates who are currently working in or have lived experience of accessing mental health services. 

CAMHRA is building a specialist MRes and PhD programme that will foster doctoral research in anthropology and mental health. Scholarships for MA and MRes positions will be available from 2024, and doctoral scholarships will be available from 2025.  

The funding for CAMHRA comes from Research England’s Expanding Excellence in England Fund which identifies research units recognised as excellent and having the potential to grow. Funding will run for five years, commencing from the 2024-2025 academic year.   

More details on the CAMHRA Master’s scholarship are available on the SOAS website.