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[April 2021] Webinar: Service user and carer involvement in mental health care and research

The webinar was attended by 150 people from 24 countries! One attendee shared: "You provided clear view on user lead organisation which is something I am hearing for the first time. I will try to implement in my country this new approach for users". A video recording is available below. 

When: Apr 19, 2021 02:00 - 04:00 PM GMT / 03:00 - 05:00 PM CET

Platform: Zoom Webinar

Target audience: mental health professionals, mental health researchers, service users, carers/family members


  • Professor Norman Sartorius (Association for the improvement of mental health programmes, Switzerland)
  • Ms Tihana Majstorović (NGO Menssana, Bosnia and Herzegovina)
  • Ms Dženana Nikšić (LEAP member, Bosnia and Herzegovina)
  • Ms Mina Aleksić (NGO Prostor, Serbia)
  • Dr Nikolina Jovanović (Queen Mary University of London, UK)

Description: Involvement of service users in mental health has been acknowledged as a ‘good thing' however, it often remains unclear what it means and how it can be implemented in practice, particularly in South-Eastern Europe (SEE). Such involvement may relate to different aspects of treatment, participation in community advocacy/legislation, and in mental health research projects. In SEE, all three segments are still in their infancy, because their development began in the 2000s. Recently, significant progress has been made about user involvement in research, which was previously a largely neglected area.

The European Commission-funded research project IMPULSE (2018-2021) aims to improve the care of individuals with psychotic disorders ( Within IMPULSE, five countries in SEE have successfully set up Lived Experience Advisory Panels (LEAPs). The LEAPs have included individuals with psychotic disorders, who over time developed a very unique expertise in advising mental health researchers on all aspects of the research process. Their contribution has improved the quality of research and helped the interpretation and dissemination of research findings.

This event brought together service users, carers, experts and researchers from IMPULSE, to share their work and discuss service user involvement in mental health care and research. Video clips showcasing user-led organisations in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia were shared. A Booklet with tips how to set up and run a user-led organization was also presented. We hope this event will facilitate service user and carer involvement in SEE and beyond.

[November 2020] Booklet: Let's Work Together! 

The IMPULSE research team has recently published a booklet about user involvement, entitled "Let's Work Together". This unique publication describes the project activities related to involving service users in research, exploring the current situation with service user-led organisation in the Balkans, and developing a model for successful user-led organization in this region. The user involvement in the Balkan countries, especially in research and policy engagement, has been neglected so far and we hope that this work will give an impulse for further development of this important area. The booklet is available in English, Serbian, Albanian, Macedonian, Bosnian and Montenegrin: Let's Work Together Booklet

[May 2020] IMPULSE Study Newsletter

IMPULSE Newsletter May 2020 [PDF 952KB]

[January 2020] IMPULSE Study Newsletter 

IMPULSE Newsletter January 2020 [PDF 876KB]



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