Dr Elizabeth Cotton

PRESENTATION: Cheer up, love.

This session will map out the policy landscape behind the UK’s IAPT programme and the well-being industry underpinned by the political alliance between behavioural psychology and behavioural economics. Exploring the systemic use of IAPT to implement benefit sanctions and get us back to work we will look at the ‘nudge’ policies behind it, and the use of performance management to implement them. We will ask whether this model of ‘recovery’ has corrupted our work and how we might protect the therapeutic alliance within this context.


Dr Elizabeth Cotton is a researcher and educator in the fields of employment relations and mental health at work based at Cardiff School of Management. She is the founder of www.survivingwork.org and http://www.thefutureoftherapy.org. and is a Trustee of the British Sociological Association (BSA). Elizabeth is currently writing her book UberTherapy: The weaponisation of Wellbeing to be published in 2023.