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Scott, A. (2013). Editorial. Brit. J. Psychother., 29(4):421-423.

(2013). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 29(4):421-423


Ann Scott

Regular readers will be aware that the Journal has been publishing an increasing number of research articles. In the last 18 months authors have reported on, for example, a qualitative study of attention to culture and diversity within a major training organization; meaningful engagement with psychotherapy outcomes; the role of metaphor in emotion disclosure in cancer patients; young women's experience of menarche and menstruation; and a naturalistic study of psychodynamic psychotherapy outcomes in an NHS outpatient department. At time of writing, several other research papers are at different stages of peer review.

This trend is not incidental; our Aims and Scope statement - revised a couple of years ago - actively encourages such submissions, whether qualitative, quantitative or mixed-method; the Journal is delighted by the response we are seeing from our authors. Now, with this issue, the Journal publishes Jean Knox's synoptic overview of the need for a research endeavour within clinical practice. Knox argues passionately for a profession-wide engagement with research data from developmental and neuroscientific studies in particular, and with research method in general, as a proper grounding for sound clinical practice; and one that would avoid the ‘psychic retreat’ of professional insularity. Her paper - the conceptual equivalent of a meta-analysis, one might say - deploys Pierce's discipline of pragmatics to argue for a form of practice that makes use of relevant empirical data about the given clinical presentation (the paper's specific focus is complex PTSD and its overlap with borderline personality disorder), while remaining sensitive to the fine gradations of work in the consulting room.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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