Paul Emmelkamp

University of Amsterdam
Paris IAS
Psychology & Cognitive Sciences
10 months

Research interests: Anxiety disorders, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Psychotherapy, Cross-cultural factors

Research Project

Cross-cultural factors, psychotherapy and post-traumatic stress in refugees

Nearly one out of three refugees suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and many of these individuals also have co-morbid mental disorders including depression and anxiety disorders, substance abuse disorder and personality disorder. Given the high prevalence of post-traumatic stress and other mental disorders including suicide ideation and suicide attempts in refugees, there is a clear need of investigating effective treatments for the mental health of this population. A number of therapies (e.g. trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy and eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing therapy) are effective for reducing clinician-rated post-traumatic stress disorder in Western countries, but whether these treatments are equally effective in people from other cultures has hardly been investigated.

This research project at the Paris IAS consists of in-depth systematic research of studies into cross-cultural factors with respect to psychopathology (e.g. post-traumatic stress disorders, anxiety and depressive disorders, personality disorders, substance use disorders) and psychotherapy including studies into culture-sensitive measures to assess these disorders. Further, studies into psychotherapy in non-western populations and in refugees are critically reviewed.


Paul Emmelkamp has contributed to a number of areas in clinical psychology, psychopathology and psychiatry. He has been appointed as professor in clinical psychology and psychotherapy at the University of Groningen and at the University of Amsterdam and has been appointed as Academy Professor by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Science. He was elected as President of the International Federation for Psychotherapy in 2014 and is Editor in Chief of Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy. He has written and edited a number of books on research into a variety of clinical subjects including anxiety disorders, addiction and personality disorders.