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St Mary’s Psychology Senior Lecturer to lead EU-Funded Mental and Physical Health at Work Project

Senior Lecturer in Psychology at St Mary’s University Twickenham (SMU), Dr Arlinda Cerga Pashoja, will be leading the EU-funded mental and physical health PROSPERH project in the UK with the support of Dr Silvia Rive, Associate Professor in Psychology at SMU.

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Senior Lecturer in Psychology at St Mary’s University Twickenham (SMU), Dr Arlinda Cerga Pashoja, will be leading the PROSPERH project in the UK with the support of Dr Silvia Riva, Associate Professor in Psychology at SMU.

PROSPERH is an EU-funded project that launched in January 2024, aiming to improve the health of workers and transform workplaces into health-promoting environments.

Workplaces have experienced rapid changes in recent years, driven by digital and green transitions, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic. For many people, new ways of working and managing work environments have emerged, affecting the physical and mental health of workers in different ways to before.

Researchers on the PROSPERH team identified that to transform workplaces into health-promoting environments, companies and workers need better tools and resources. The PROSPERH team is made up of a consortium of 21 partners from 19 countries that are working together to develop and validate the multi-level PROSPERH intervention, delivered via the online PROSPERH Portal.

The intervention will target organisational, peer and individual aspects of workplaces, with three components focusing on health promotion, online self-monitoring and self-management, and clinical care or coaching referral pathways.

Development of the intervention will build on existing knowledge and tools developed by the consortium in previous EU-funded projects, MENTUPP and iFightDepression. The project will focus on the telework and ICT-based mobile work, health, and construction sectors, which are all experiencing significant change and challenges in the physical and mental health of workers.

Once developed, the intervention will be tested in Albania, Australia, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Kosovo, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Turkey. Key project outcomes will include policy guidelines and recommendations, as well as a roadmap for making the PROSPERH Portal freely available to companies.

The project will be overseen by Professor Ella Arensman at University College Cork, with Dr Arlinda Cerga Pashoja leading the project in the UK.

Speaking on the project, Dr Arlinda Cerga Pashoja said, “We are excited to embark on a five-year research journey with the PROSPERH project funded via EU Horizon Europe through UKRI. We are proud to continue being part of a consortium at the forefront of scientific research, with whom we just finalised a successful research project called MENTUPP.

“In PROSPERH we aim to develop and evaluate interventions to improve both the mental and physical health of staff in changing working environments. PROSPERH supports the UN Sustainable Development Goal: Good Health and Wellbeing, by strengthening the capacity of countries for prevention, early warning, and risk reduction of mental and physical health issues.”

Dr Silvia Riva added, “As we witness novel approaches to work and management emerging, influencing the well-being of employees in both positive and challenging ways, there is a pressing need to delve into innovative strategies for transforming workplaces into environments that not only adapt but actively promote health.

"The PROSPERH project is at the forefront of addressing this need, recognizing the complex interplay between evolving work structures and the mental and physical health of individuals."

You can find out more about the PROSPERH project here.

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