The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) that has caused the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic represents the greatest international biopsychosocial emergency the world has faced for a century, and psychological science has an integral role to offer in helping societies recover. The aim of this paper is to set out the shorter- and longer-term priorities for research in psychological science that will (a) frame the breadth and scope of potential contributions from across the discipline; (b) enable researchers to focus their resources on gaps in knowledge; and (c) help funders and policymakers make informed decisions about future research priorities in order to best meet the needs of societies as they emerge from the acute phase of the pandemic. The research priorities were informed by an expert panel convened by the British Psychological Society that reflects the breadth of the discipline; a wider advisory panel with international input; and a survey of 539 psychological scientists conducted early in May 2020. The most pressing need is to research the negative biopsychosocial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic to facilitate immediate and longer-term recovery, not only in relation to mental health, but also in relation to behaviour change and adherence, work, education, children and families, physical health and the brain, and social cohesion and connectedness. We call on psychological scientists to work collaboratively with other scientists and stakeholders, establish consortia, and develop innovative research methods while maintaining high-quality, open, and rigorous research standards.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Christopher Armitage's contribution is supported by the NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre and the NIHR Greater Manchester Patient Safety Translational Research Centre. The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and not necessarily those of NIHR. Armitage would like to thank Professors Madelynne Arden and Alison Wearden for their support in writing. Til Wykes would like to acknowledge the support of her NIHR Senior Investigator Award.
© 2020 The Authors. British Journal of Psychology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Psychological Society
Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
- behaviour change
- human development
- mental health
- psychological science