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Edward R Watkins Ph.D.


Edward Watkins, Ph.D. is a research clinical psychologist, with an MSc and Chartership in Clinical Psychology (1995) and a PhD (1998), both from the Institute of Psychiatry, London. From 1995-2003, he worked as a cognitive therapist at the Affective Disorders Unit, Maudsley Hospital, London, a national unit specialising in the treatment of depression, working in in-patient, out-patient and primary care settings.

From 1998-2003, Prof. Watkins held the position of Research Fellow in Cognitive Clinical Psychology of Depression, a position split between the Department of Psychology, Institute of Psychiatry and the Medical Research Council - Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit. In this role, Prof. Watkins collaborated with Professor John Teasdale in investigating cognitive processes in depression. He was also a core supervisor on the Institute of Psychiatry, Department of Psychology Diploma Course in Cognitive Therapy from 1998-2003.

Prof. Watkins joined the University of Exeter as a Senior Lecturer in October 2003, and was promoted to Reader in Clinical Psychology in 2005 and to a full chair in 2007.

Prof. Watkins was awarded the British Psychological Society‘s May Davidson Award for 2004. This award is for "a clinical psychologist who has made an outstanding contribution to the development of clinical psychology within the first 10 years of his/her work as a qualified clinical psychologist. The contribution may be through clinical research or other professional work. It should be innovative and of an order sufficient to become widely recognised as an important development in British clinical psychology".

He currently works as a researcher, teacher and clinical practitioner in the Mood Disorders Centre, a partnership between the University of Exeter and Devon Partnership NHS Trust.

His research has been funded by NARSAD, Medical Research Council-UK, National Institute for Health Research (NIHR, UK) and the Wellcome Trust to the value of over £7 million.

His main areas of research are (i) understanding thinking in depression, with a focus on rumination and worry, memory, problem-solving and attention; (ii) improving psychological treatments for depression, working in a cognitive-behavioural approach.

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