Synergi team wins Judges’ Prize for poster presentation

Synergi’s Participatory Action Research (PAR) project team have won the Judges’ Prize for the best poster presentation at the BPS Division of Clinical Psychology Annual Conference 2020, by illustrating its work on tackling ethnic inequalities in severe psychological distress.

The prize was judged on several key criteria, including the use of sound methodology and application of psychological theory, conceptual clarity (and the potential level of interest in the topic), originality or the potential to make a strong contribution to theory or practice.

Charlotte Maxwell, one of the PAR project’s five co-researchers, said: “It was a great experience, pulling together all the conversations we’ve had, all the data we have collected from our project over the past six months, and being able to share the findings beyond our meetings. Winning the Judges’ Prize is the cherry on top of a piece of work we have all committed a lot of time, energy and passion to. Designing the poster was an added bonus for me, creatively.”

Dr Maria Haarmans, PAR project lead at the University of Manchester, said: “It is really rewarding to get this recognition for co-produced work that aims to amplify marginalised voices, enhance understanding of ethnic inequalities and promote reform in mental health services and power structures more broadly. DCP BPS has seen the value of Participatory Action Research with people with lived experience, and its importance to social justice, ethnic inequalities and systems change.”

“Working with the co-researchers in a participatory way, with our varied life experiences and positionalities, allows for a more complex, nuanced understanding of the research methodology itself – and the life story interview data. Working in this way is something I am very passionate about, have been committed to throughout my career, and feel very fortunate to be able to do.”

The BPS DCP conference, entitled ‘New Adventures in Clinical Psychology: Personal, Professional and Political Partnerships’, took place on 22nd and 23rd of January 2020 in Solihull.

You can view the winning poster here.