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Researcher

I am an active researcher with numerous national competitive grants. I study psychological flexibility, or what i call “flexible strength”, a cluster of skills that can be used to promote personal growth and build vitality and valued action. I seek to address three questions.

  • How do we measure aspects of flexible strength?
  • How do different aspects of flexible strength develop and change?
  • How do we promote flexible strength?

Examples of skills related to flexible strength are emotional intelligence, social intelligence, mindfulness, psychological flexibility, nonattachment, grit, equanimity, will-power, and emotion regulation skill.  I have over 100 international journal articles, books, and book chapters . My work on emotional intelligence is amongst the most highly cited in the EI area. I currently have over 1 million dollars in competitive funding to investigate the causes of well-being and interpersonal effectiveness

I have published research on mindfulness, acceptance, values and other core processes that are linked to resilience and well-being.

RESEARCH INTERESTS.

My work focuses on  aspects of flexible strength that are potentially modifiable and that have been hypothesized to promote well-being and performance.

  • Identifying character strengths and skills that promote social well-being (e.g., relationship satisfaction, low antisocial behavior),  emotional well-being (e.g., happiness, low depression), physical well-being (e.g., physical health and activity), and performance (e.g., grades).
  • Designing and Evaluating interventions to reduce suffering, promote vitality, and promote social effectiveness (in a variety of contexts, including organizations, adolescents, and cancer groups).
  • Identifying the developmental causes and consequences of character
  • Contextual Behavioral Science topics, including those related to Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Relational Frame Theory

RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

  • Australian Research Council Future Fellow (2011-2014)  (This fellowship recognizes that the quality of my track record is very high compared to other Associate Professors. It covers most of my salary and equipment needs).
  • I have been influential. For example,  I have been cited over 7300  times and have an H-index of 43 according to google scholar
  • I am chief-editor of the Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science
  • 80 books
  • Over 90 peer reviewed articles

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT HIGHLIGHTS

  • I oversee a large longitudinal study involving 3000 adolescents in high schools located in the Illawara and far north Queensland.
  • I run a program called Imagine, which involves providing flexible strength training to student leaders and then supporting them to put prosocial interventions into play in their communities (e.g., an anti-bullying campaigns).
  • I regularly conduct well-being and stress management workshops for the public
  • I do consultancy work with National Rugby League Teams