Research that makes a difference


  • Cary L. Cooper


Given the dramatic economic times we are all living in today, it is important, more than ever before, that the research we undertake in the field of psychology is of relevance to society. The economic recession is one of the worst in recent history, and will have many consequences for the cultures that we live and work in. It will not only affect the field of occupational psychology but also clinical, developmental and neuro-cognitive psychology as well. The impact of this downturn is having consequences for individual’s health and well-being, family relationships, the roles of men and women at work and in the family, and for old age as well as work opportunities begin to dry up for older workers. It is incumbent of research psychologists that our work is relevant and applied to the contemporary problems we currently face. We will always engage of blue-sky or basic psychological research, but many of the problems people face in Europe during these difficult times require apposite and effective solutions. The time has come for applied psychologists to work on the issues that really matter in understanding human behaviour in times of distress. This is a golden opportunity for us, as many of the changes that are taking place across Europe provide us with a natural laboratory for our science, and the practice of applied psychology.