“I’m looking at your resilience and robustness in awe”: Exploring Vicarious Resilience in Clinical Psychologists Specialising in Neurological Rehabilitation

  • Anna Green

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


This hermeneutic qualitative study used Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) to explore the lived experience of vicarious resilience (VR) in clinical psychologists specialising in neurological rehabilitation. Superordinate themes of giving-self, protecting- self and socially responsible-self were related to layers of individual, therapeutic, organisational and social context. A dynamic multi-directional interaction is proposed stemming from self-awareness, which influences views of self with an emotional impact and a transformation in values. The Covid-19 pandemic represented an amplification of participants’ experiences. The derivation of the injury or illness and the background information provided by the participants did not appear to influence their responses.
VR research has to date focused on clinical populations where there has been an intention of violence or persecution. Recognising vicarious resilience in clinical psychologists working with service users, where the trauma is primarily related to a health- related condition, has implications for the well-being of a wide range of healthcare providers. It also encourages organisations to consider their obligations toward caring for clinicians with prolonged exposure to distress and trauma.
Date of AwardOct 2023
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Teesside University
SupervisorMia Campbell (Supervisor)

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