Research in Scotland

The Scotland research team establish knowledge and insights that fuel positive change for a mentally healthy society for all.

We collaborate with leading universities across the UK; we are also recognised internationally for our participatory research and focus on working with marginalised communities.

Our original research studies are fundamental to understanding how to promote and prevent mental health problems. We seek a deep understanding of what works in different communities and environments to inform our programmes and policies and influence others.

Explore our research studies below to find out more about our work.

Featured reports

Uncertain times: Anxiety in the UK and how to tackle it

This briefing looks at the prevalence and rates of anxiety amongst different groups of people, and the current key drivers and risk factors for anxiety. It also considers the main ways of coping with anxiety and provides recommendations to governments across the UK for preventing anxiety.

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The economic case for investing in the prevention of mental health conditions in the UK

Our report with the London School of Economics and Political Science provides evidence from the UK and around the world that proves prevention interventions work.

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Surviving or Thriving? The state of the UK's mental health

This report aims to understand the prevalence of self-reported mental health problems, levels of positive and negative mental health in the population, and the actions people take to deal with the stressors in their lives.

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Nature: How connecting with nature benefits our mental health - Scotland

Our relationship with nature – how much we notice, think about and appreciate our natural surroundings – is a critical factor in supporting good mental health and preventing distress.

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Prevention and mental health report

This report provides an understanding of the evidence for prevention and mental health so that we can address the greatest health challenge of our times.

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Tackling social inequalities to reduce mental health problems

This report describes the extent of inequalities contributing to poor mental health in the UK today. It explains how certain circumstances interact with our own risks and discusses communities that are facing vulnerabilities.

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Fundamental facts about mental health 2016

A comprehensive summary of mental health research, providing a unique handbook of key facts and figures, covering all key areas of mental health.

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Relationships in the 21st century: the forgotten foundation of mental health and well-being

This report explores relationships across the life course, why they matter and the importance of being part of a community.

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Body image: We are more than what we look like - Scotland

This report highlights a series of key recommendations for helping young people across Scotland achieve good body image and recognise that we are much more than what we look like.

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Our research projects


The Mental Health Foundation are the evaluation and learning partner for the Barnardo’s Core Priority Programme in mental health and wellbeing.

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Thriving Learners

This research study is one of the largest of its kind, looking into student mental health across Scotland.

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Voices and Visibility report

How do we make sure refugees and asylum seekers have voices and visibility when it comes to decision-making in Scotland?

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See Me Scotland

See Me is Scotland's national programme to tackle mental health stigma across Scotland, with the Mental Health Foundation providing the research and evaluation for the programme.

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Coronavirus: Mental Health in the pandemic study in Scotland

Explore the Scotland research team’s work as part of the UK-wide study.

See the study
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