Skip to main content
Wolfson Institute of Population Health

Andrea Palinski BA, MSc




I am a lecturer in Mental Health based within the Unit of Psychological Medicine in the Centre for Psychiatry and Mental Health. I am also currently undertaking a PhD at the Centre.

I completed an undergraduate degree in Biology and Anthropology at Hamilton College in the United States. After working as a clinical case manager for mentally ill adolescents and adults for several years in the US, I completed her MSc in Medical Anthropology at UCL in 2007.

In 2008 I was appointed lead of the Cultural Consultation Service (CCS) King’s Fund Project in the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust. CCS was based on the model of cultural consultation developed at McGill University in Canada. The model utilized anthropological methodology and theory within psychiatric settings in an attempt to address issues of cultural inequality through the reduction of misunderstanding and conflict in the clinical encounter. The service was delivered to adult mental health teams within the Trust and was based within the Trust’s organisational consultancy service, SLAM Partners, where Andrea was also involved with the delivery of individual organisational consultancy.

In 2010, I became Team Leader of a PCT commissioned CCS directed by Prof Kam Bhui and based at the Centre for Psychiatry. This service also built on the McGill model of Cultural Consultation; however, it was further developed to provide a multi-level service involving organisational, team based and individual clinical cultural consultations. The service operated as a tertiary mental health service for adult mental health CMHTs within the East London NHS Trust. During this time I was active in managing staff, delivering consultations, ethnographic data collection of service delivery processes and outcomes and research publications. I was also a Visiting Lecturer on clinical psychology programmes at the Institute of Psychiatry and Goldsmiths, University of London.

In 2012 Andrea joined the MSc in Mental Health programme as a lecturer and later registered for a PhD. Her current research is focused on inequalities in mental health and the role of shared narratives in the intercultural clinical encounter.


I teach on the MSc in Mental Health Programmes.


Research Interests:

My research interests include inequalities in mental health, illness narratives and explanatory models, organisational cultures within health care systems and how these challenge or perpetuate inequalities, therapeutic communication, and cultural borderlands in urban spaces.

The ethnographic research completed during my MSc focused on minority youth experiences of the state and postcode gang culture in North London. The study addressed the role of youth in the process of transitional polarization and reterritorialization occurring within a deprived urban community.

I am currently in the process of completing a PhD based on the ethnographic research data collected over the course of the Cultural Consultation Service. The PhD aims to explore the construction and role of shared narratives within the intercultural clinical encounter with a particular focus on the factors and systems which facilitate or impede the construction of these narratives.



Back to top