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Current research projects

The employees at the Birgit Rausing Centre for Medical Humanities are all involved in various educational, collaborative or research projects. Here are some of our current  research projects.

The Epione* project

The frequent headlines about the work situation in health care have not gone unnoticed by the Birgit Rausing Centre for Medical Humanities. One of our researchers, Elinor Schad, PhD, psychologist, senior lecturer in Pedagogical Psychology, has launched a research project to get a deeper understanding for these questions, also over time.

How do newly graduated healthcare professionals perceive the work situation? How does job satisfaction correlate with self-care, empathy fatigue and secondary trauma? Currently, we are reaching out to graduates from health care programmes (nursing, physiotherapy, audiology, psychology, medical etc) to be able to follow them in their work and stay in contact over four years. 

Are you interested in working with us in the Epione-project? 

If you hold a master’s degree (or equivalent) in Psychology, have research aspirations, and some previous experience in psychological research (or a closely related research field), as well as excellent proficiency in English, both written and oral? Then perhaps being a doctoral student in the four-year doctoral programme at the department of Psychology at Lund University could be of interest to you.

If you are interested in joining our cross-disciplinary research team, contact Dr. Elinor Schad for further information regarding the application process. Applications will be reviewed and evaluated in several stages; the deadline for the first round of applications is January 15th, 2024. Contact Principal Investigator Elinor Schad, elinor [dot] schad [at] psy [dot] lu [dot] se (elinor[dot]schad[at]psy[dot]lu[dot]se), for more information about the application process and the Epione project.

*Epione: Ancient Greek goddess of soothing of pain and healing. 

Shared reading

personer sitter på en rad med uppslagna böcker i knäet. Foto.

Reading out aloud and talking about literature in groups without pressure to perform has proven to be an appreciated cultural activity. It can also have positive effects on the well-being of certain patient groups. The concept, called "Shared Reading", is offered in libraries but also in healthcare. A new research study shows that a key for the success is in the method's conversation structure. Anna W Gustafsson and Katarina Bernhardsson, both at the Birgit Rausing Centre for Medical Humanities, are co-authors of a recently published interdisciplinary research study.

Download the study: An Intricate Dance of Intersubjectivity. The Social and Cognitive Benefits of a Digital Shared Reading Group (new window)

A bibliometric analysis of how an interdisciplinary research field develops

A starting point for us in 2022 was to get a sense of what the research landscape looks like when it comes to Medical humanities. We also became interested in our own work-approach. Together with resources from the Lund University Library, Anna Tunlid is now working on the project: “A bibliometric analysis of how an interdisciplinary research field develops with respect to form and content: The example of Medical humanities”.

Vaccine hesitancy among healthcare students

Within the large research and education network EUGLOH, the European University Alliance for Global Health, research is underway that can help us understand vaccination reluctance in people who will work in healthcare. Together with a number of European researchers, Mia-Marie Hammarlin plays an active part in the project “Vaccine hesitancy among healthcare students in Europe”.

Website of the European University Alliance for Global Health

Scrabble single letter tiles forming the word resilience. Photo.

Existential resilience, aesthetics and inter-personality

Those whose professional practice is based on interpersonal relationships and caring for other people often suffer from work-related stress. What happens to these people — and the societal structures they work in — when they experience feelings of futility? What measures can be taken to strengthen the existential "immune system" of individuals? And how can such measures be based on experiences of and in the arts and nature? 14 parties within and outside Lund University hope to be able to answer these – and more – questions within the framework of a collaborative project. Several of our researchers are involved in this project and centre director Martin [dot] Garwicz [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (Martin[dot]Garwicz[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se) is one of the project coordinators.

Article on Lund University's website: The inner journey towards a sustainable future

Blog post about the thematic collaborative initiative: Existential resilience: Contemplation, aesthetics, compassion (ERiCi)

Graffiti writing on wall the word poetry. Photo.

Health-promoting poetry and art in health care

Have you ridden an elevator in a large hospital building? Spent time in the waiting rooms or hospital corridors? Have you ever reflected on the art – or lack of art – (not) there? Jonatan Wistrand has. He is member of staff at the Birgit Rausing Centre for Medical Humanities and also a physician. Together with Region Skåne, he therefore started the project "Health-promoting poetry and art in health care".

Information about the project and poetry exhibition on the project's webpage (in Swedish)


Åsa Thormählen
Asa [dot] Thormahlen [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se (Asa[dot]Thormahlen[at]med[dot]lu[dot]se)