It’s been five years since the launch of the government’s flagship mental health programme, Improving Access for Psychological Therapies (IAPT). IAPT is the biggest expansion of mental health services anywhere in the world, ever. It has already trained 4,000 new therapists in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, and 2,000 more therapists are being trained. It’s doubled the Read more…

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I’ve just been at a three-day seminar at the Institute for Government, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, to help academics learn how to influence public policy. The seminar brought together 15 academics in disciplines ranging from literary criticism to design and urban planning.The IFG arranged an impressive line-up of Westminster big-wigs to Read more…

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Big day today. I’ve finally finished my report on grassroots philosophy groups, which you can download here: Connected Communities- Philosophical Communities. It’s taken me eight months to research and write, and has made me realise quite how vibrant and diverse the world of grassroots philosophy is. There are 850 philosophy groups just on meetup.com alone, with Read more…

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There’s a new spirit of self-help and mutual improvement blowing through public health policy. I first felt its breeze in Scotland’s national mental health strategy, which was published in August, and which made much of its ‘person-centred approach’ to mental health in Scotland. One of the main themes of the strategy is “embedding more peer-to-peer Read more…

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Are we heading for a a new Enlightenment or a new Dark Ages? On the one hand, there are signs that climate change is beginning to have serious impacts on our civilisation. As Bill McKibben writes today in Rolling Stone magazine, May was the hottest month on record for the northern hemisphere, and it was Read more…

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