Willem Kuyken is Professor of Clinical Psychology at University of Oxford. His work is focused on better understanding depression and translating this understanding into cost-effective approaches to preventing and treating depression. Increasingly, this has been concentrated on mindfulness and mindfulness-based interventions aimed at preventing both first onset and recurrent depression. (For more information, visit the Research page of this website).
Willem is a research clinical psychologist. After completing his PhD (Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College London, 1992) and clinical training (1997) he worked for two years as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Cognitive Therapy, University of Pennsylvania / Beck Institute with Aaron T. Beck (1997-1999). He is a "grand-fathered" Fellow of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy.
Since 1999, he has worked at the University of Exeter, England, where he has held a number of roles including heading up the doctoral clinical psychology training programme (2001-2004), leading the clinical research group (2001 - 2010) and Academic Lead (2010-date). In 2004, Willem co-founded the Mood Disorders Centre, a research, clinical and training centre that aims to better understand depression, translate that understanding into accessible evidence-based therapies and improve access to these therapies for people who suffer depression.
In 2012, he and Alison Evans co-founded the Mindfulness Network CIC whose intention is to reduce human suffering, promote well-being and create the conditions in which people can flourish. The Network brings together researchers, mindfulness teachers, dharma teachers and health, education and social care professionals. Willem's work is informed by a longstanding personal mindfulness practice in the Vipassana tradition, supported by annual retreats at Gaia House since 1993.
Professor Kuyken's specialist expertise is in cognitive-behavioural therapy and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy. His research expertise is in clinical trials, mechanisms of change in psychological therapies, experimental clinical research and qualitative research.