International Research Committee


Intervoice is an international network for training, education and research that works across the world to spread positive and hopeful messages about voice hearing. Contrary to conventional messages of pessimism and pathology, we believe voice hearing is a normal human variation which needs acknowledgment. Intervoice therefore aims to support the emancipation of voice hearers, promote acceptance, tolerance and understanding towards voice hearing experiences and stimulate the dissemination of networks for voice hearers and their allies.

One of the aims of Intervoice is to provide positive information about voice hearing. In light of this, we want to ask researchers to take part in an international committee for gathering information and initiating research into voice hearing. Crucially, this work will be informed by the needs of voice hearers themselves; issues which are relevant for their daily lives. Via the Intervoice website and Facebook group, plus several national network websites, we will ask voice hearers to identify research questions which are relevant and valuable for them.

We will then ask the committee to select themes and issues from this data and transform them to operational research questions. Members of the committee will be required to either put these questions onto their own research agendas, or stimulate collaborators to address them (e.g., PhD students).

In this way we will create a database for further investigation that is open to researchers, who are selected by the members of the research committee.

Committee Members

  • Eleanor Longden – Coordinator (Psychologist & Expert by Experience; University of Leeds, UK)
  • Michaela Amering (Professor of Social Psychiatry; University of Vienna, AUS)
  • Anita Brewin (Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Bradford Early Intervention Service, UK)
  • Patrick Le Cardinal (Psychiatrist; EPSM Lille Metropole; WHO Collaborating Centre, FR)
  • Gail Hornstein (Professor of Psychology; Mount Holyoke College, USA)
  • Ruth Lambley (Psychologist & Expert by Experience; York Primary Care Trust, UK)
  • Lyn Mahboub (BAPsych/CCS & Expert by Experience, A)
  • Simon McCarthy-Jones (Psychologist; University of Durham, UK)
  • Andrew Moskowitz (Professor of Psychology; University of Aarhus, DK)
  • John Read (Professor of Psychology; University of Auckland, NZ)
  • Marius Romme (Emeritus Professor of Social Psychiatry; University of Maastricht, NL)
  • Colin Ross (Clinician & Researcher; Ross Institute of Psychological Trauma, USA)
  • Bertel Rudinger (Pharmacologist & Expert by Experience; Slotsvaenget, DK)
  • Alain Topor (Psychologist and Assistant Professor, dept. Social Work; University of Stockholm, S)
  • Harrie van Haaster (Researcher, Institute for Users’ Participation and Policy, NL)
  • Jim van Os (Professor of Psychiatry; University of Maastricht, NL; London Institute of Psychiatry, UK)
  • Rachel Waddingham (researcher & expert by experience; Mind in Camden, UK)

18 responses to “International Research Committee”

  1. Returncc

    I think this research idea is grand idea. I used to be a working junior lawyer until I developed hearing voices. I want to suggest how to keep voice hearing conversations legal from the point of view of provoked behaviours and research that relates to legal forms of communictaion with voices depending on the degree or stages of voice hearing awareness for the improved comfort of the mind of the
    voice hearer.

  2. Aless Lee Cloverfield

    Greetings from Canada!

    First of all, I think this is a radically subversive, amazing approach to [what I feel] is possibly misunderstood and unfairly stigmatized.

    I may be able to be of some use and help contribute to this movement. I have experienced one “psychotic break” (early 30’s / f / family history). I remember many things quite clearly, and it would help me to feel safe in discussing what I saw/ heard/ saw. Hearing voices isn’t definitively “psychotic”; when compared and contrasted with my ‘organized thinking’, I don’t know most of the people/ places/ things I heard and saw.

    Help? I might be able to help and maybe you can help me? 🙂

  3. Yolande Banos

    Perfect just what I was searching for! .

  4. John Woodcock

    I currently live in Australia and my own PhD (1999) is a first person narrative of my 20 year ordeal with “hearing voices”, (and visions) that did indeed take me into the domain of “madness.” The source of inspiration for my thesis were “voices”. Writing the thesis brought me back into contact with the community and probably saved me. The main terror was: I will not be understood if I speak my experiences!

    Since then I have written several books which are an attempt to communicate the meaning of my experiences in terms of the larger picture of world events (my thesis was The End of the World as a Crisis in Consciousness). My thesis and books are on my web site (see below). The theoretical underpinning of my doctoral work was:

    1. Phenomenology(Heuristic Method)
    2. Evolution of consciousness (the work of Owen Barfield and others)
    3. The psychology of the unconscious – C.G. Jung

    I have been working essentially alone with my post doctoral project of communicating to others that “mad” experiences are a human apprehension of a new Reality that is emerging from the present one of Positivism. It seems to be emerging through the wounds of trauma (hence torment and great suffering is awakened) and has its own phenomenology that tests one’s grip on current Reality sorely. I have been developing a genre of literature that can best express such an emergence as an art form so that others can recognize it in themselves and so that we can have a basis for communication. My books are an attempt to do just that. I believe that the harbingers of this new reality are the “voices” that people hear.

    I am very enthusiastic to collaborate with others as a part of forming a community of souls that can advance this work.

    Is there some way we can do this?


    John Woodcock

  5. Dr Phillip Stacey

    Dear IRC,

    I have been working in the public mental health sector for years working with voice hearers from a psychological framework. I’m also a member of ISPS and collaborate with some colleagues that I’m sure you already know.

    I have moved to a university to teach and start a program of research on positive and supportive aspects of voices, and on what makes HVG’s successful. I have an Honours student who is about to start a research project on positive voices what environmental factors predict these versus critical and hostile voices.

    We have some local support from NGO’s (Communify and Richmond Fellowship), and we’d really appreciate support from Intervoice. Can you assist?

    Kind regards,

    Phillip & Rachael

    1. Intervoice Admin

      Dear Dr Stacey,

      Thank you for your post. We have sent it to Intervoice’s Research Committee and they should be in touch with you.

      Intervoice Admin

  6. Rachel Rappell

    How about research into:

    “Healthcare professionals (Doctors, psychiatrists, nurses) understanding of the voice hearer & the voice hearing experience?”

    I mean, when you visit any government site re: schizophrenia or mental health, it is heavily steeped in unproven bio medical theories and life long pharmalogical intervention is also often cited without question as “the answer”… so how do we change this?
    I firmly believe that education is the key to changing the current mental health system and the way voice hearers are treated by health care professionals within it. However, until we know what the healthcare professionals within this system actually think about voice hearers and how much (and what) they actually “Know” about the voice hearing experience, we are probably wasting a lot of time and effort. I would love to see the HVN become part of the mainstream treatment approach for voice hearers and this could be a good way to start that process I think.
    Thanks for listening, (and I hope I made sense!),
    Kind regards,
    Rachel Rappell

  7. Annie Roker

    I plan on commencing a PhD next year 2013 and would like to do some work on the difference between positive and negative voices. Can you help. Thanks, Annie Roker.

  8. Paul Alfred Nosworthy

    I am new to activism and campaigning.

    I have an idea/question which I am going to campaign on/work to which ought to be being researched and implemented in Mental healthcare in the UK.

    Early Intervention is a fantastic idea and premise. The services are known to be very effective in the treatment of psychosis (I would put a label down, but there are many, as you know).

    However as far as I’m aware it absolutely excludes those not having a first episode/experience of psychosis. But this is the bit that niggles me. One could access such services or an equivalent service privately if say it was a second or third episode, or after diagnosis had happened.

    Why isn’t early intervention available for suitable candidates with a longer history at least? And why isn’t our NHS offering it to people who have been ill for longer when you could put something together privately if you had the cash.

    I feel it should be rolled out, rather than people with a longer history being demoted to wards and assertive outreach teams and the like.

    Anyway I am doing my groundwork/homework to get a suitable campaign to lobby for this issue to be examined and I came across this committee and it might be a suitable question to ask.

    Just to reiterate; why isn’t early intervention more widely available for people with a previous history?

  9. Paul Alfred Nosworthy

    Research into education (higher, further etc).

    Hi please could you field this question as a research question (if relevant or valuable)?

    There are few (if any) statistics surrounding education and schizophrenia. In the simplest terms, can education (university for example), provide a better outcome for recovery in schizophrenia? Has anyone even asked how many people go on to a successful education after a diagnosis of schizophrenia?

    Of the (approx) percentage of independently living people with this diagnosis, how many have gone on to education as a part of a recovery? Has this been studied?

    I personally went back to uni after a diagnosis of schizo-effective disorder. I find the structure of the life really helped my mood recover (and having a structured timetable).

    The life skills necessary for going through education are essentially a huge part in my recovery/staying well.

    I am an undergraduate chemist and lab work changed my ‘practical’ confidence profoundly. I am going to go on and have a career in research (maybe even a PhD if I do well enough in this, my final year).
    So anyway if research was ever done on education and the part it could play with recovery, then I personally would be very interested to read about it and collaborate in my future career as an academic (if I make the grade in my final exams!)

    1. SH

      Hi Paul,

      Sorry that this is a delayed response! I think your research suggestion is really interesting! Did anyone ever get in touch with you about it? I am a postgraduate student in mental health and well-being and I would be very keen on looking into this for my research project.

  10. Dario


    I’m writing from the Institute of Art and Ideas in Britain and I thought I’d get in contact as we’ve recently released a video you might be interested in.

    Entitled “Treating Psychosis”, it’s a talk by psychologist Richard Bentall on the limits and issues with the psychiatric establishment. Richard Bentall has been over the years a leading critic of the biological explanation of mental illness.

    Given the content you share on Intervoice Online, I thought this debate would appeal to you and your readers, and if it does it would be lovely if you could link to it in a post.

    Please, let me know if you have any questions.

    Kind Regards

  11. Anthony


    I’ve just watched Eleanor’s TED Talk and I have found a KEY that should be of interest.

    The Key is a psychological device dressed up as an oracle because I’ve been down an esoteric path, studied Jung’s Alchemy, and the Kabbalah, Tarot etc. Communication with voices and images entails decoding the symbolism in these downloads using a language of symbols. The Path is well mapped and the Key is a simple process for unpacking symbols to arrive at a synthesis that opens the metaphorical language that Eleanor speaks of.

    I’ve called it Mx, where M relates to meta-language, mentalese, metaphor, mind, map, multiples, … the x or cross is a symbol that speaks for itself. Try it out.


  12. julian penton

    Not so much a comment as a request – I’d like to get in touch with Eleanor (having recently seen her speak at the Durham Literary Festival) to see if she might be available to speak at a conference of the Human Givens Institute in June next year – on the future of mental health services.

    Can anyone help with a contact email?

    Many thanks – Julian Penton

  13. Melissa G Walters-Guimoye

    Thank you for having an organization that really knows what they’re talking about!

  14. Nickei Falconer

    hi there
    I’ve just watched Eleanor’s TED talk after being recommended it by a client.
    I’m a counsellor and psychotherapist, practicing in Christchurch, New Zealand.
    I’m SO relieved to see this TED talk and to have a look at the work Intervoice are doing.
    My client recommended this clip to me as this is how we’ve been working over a number of years-to support her to bring her internal fragmentation into holistic, synergistic collaboration.
    Thank you for your courage Eleanor-in negotiating your way through this personally. And then for speaking out and challenging the dominant paradigm which condemns people to a diagnosis of sickness, and medicates them-rather than supporting their experience as an expression of survival and an innate striving for health.
    I’m very grateful.
    Many thanks

  15. Mrs Forouz Saunders

    Two years ago, my then sixteen years old daughter disclosed her horrific experience when she was six. From that moment her health took the down turn with hearing voices, seeing things and self-harming. Trauma therapy could not start until her condition stabilised. However, after numerous medication trials and weeks of hospitalisation the future of this once talented young woman looks grim. Despite everything, I can see how hard she is trying and holding on to life. After seeing Eleanor Longden in Ted Talks, I have once more become hopeful. Could you tell me what can be done for my eighteen years young daughter.

    1. Intervoice Admin

      We are glad to hear that you found Eleanor’s talk helpful. In the UK, Voice Collective is a project working with young people who hear voices or who have any other unusual experiences. Please see the website for more details: (Intervoice Admin)

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