Cullen, K., Rhodes, P., Brockman, R., Hunt, C., & Langtiw, C. L. (2020). Decolonising clinical psychology: National and international perspectives. Clinical Psychologist, 24(3), 211-222.

Throughout the 19th and 20th Centuries psychology has been used as a tool of colonisation. Critical theorists argue that in order to improve the wellbeing of those most affected by inequality, psychology programs need to be decolonised. In the Australian context, research has primarily focused on what decolonised curricula might look (e.g., Dudgeon 2017; Mahmut, 2018). The current study aimed to build on this research by providing insights into the critical processes and issues involved in decolonising clinical psychology programs.

Researchers conducted 10 interviews with academics from Australia and abroad who were actively engaged in a process of decolonising their psychology programs. Interviews focused on how academics have decolonised their programs and what barriers they faced in this process.

The model which has emerged from this research highlighted the central role of personhood, institutions and curricula in decolonising clinical psychology programs and offers a roadmap for universities interested in starting this process. The research also provided insights into the paradoxes of decolonising clinical psychology programs in colonial contexts and highlighted the need to validate this model through participatory action research with local communities.

Findings support previous research which demonstrated the importance of including indigenous history and knowledges in psychology curricula. This article offers new insights into how these can be adapted and applied to clinical psychology programs specifically, as well as insights into the role that personhood and institutions play in decolonising psychology programs.