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Professor Jonathan A Smith elected as an Honorary Fellow of the British Psychological Society

The Honorary Fellowship is one of the highest awards of the British Psychological Society, with the list of previous recipients including such luminaries as Carl Jung, Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky.

Professor Jonathan A Smith

Professor Jonathan A Smith, Professor of Psychology and Chartered Psychologist, has been elected as an Honorary Fellow of the British Psychological Society in recognition of his outstanding contributions to psychology over the last 20 years. 

Professor Smith is a leading international figure in the development of qualitative methods in psychology and has been involved in numerous research studies in health and illness. Professor Smith established the innovative qualitative research methodology interpretative phenomenological analysis. Its applied to address a broad range of questions in personal experience and is one of the best-known qualitative methodologies in the UK and, increasingly, internationally.

Professor Smith, said:

“I am very proud to be awarded this Honorary Fellowship of the British Psychological Society and to join a list of such illustrious people, among whom are psychologists I particularly admire for the distinctive contribution they have made to the discipline. It is a recognition for the work I have done but it is, at the same time, an acknowledgement of a large collective movement in qualitative research. As part of that movement, people from many disciplines and from all over the world are using the distinctive research approach I have developed, interpretative phenomenological analysis, to address important questions about participants’ personal lived experience. I am also very proud of that.”

This year marks 20 years of Jonathan working at Birkbeck. Prior to joining the College, Jonathan achieved a DPhil in Psychology from Oxford University and then held lectureships at Keele University and Sheffield University. 

Dr Joanna Brooks, Chair of the British Psychological Society’s Qualitative Methods in Psychology section, commented:

“Professor Smith is one of the best-known and highest-cited qualitative psychologists in the world, and he is a very worthy recipient of this distinguished award. Professor Smith has played a pioneering role over the last 20 years in establishing and enhancing the place of qualitative research in psychology. In addition to his own impressive record and innovative contributions, Professor Smith is very highly regarded within the discipline for his exceptional support of other qualitative psychologists at all career stages. I’m absolutely delighted that his achievements and contributions have been recognised and celebrated by the British Psychological Society in this way.”

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