Edinburgh Local

Festival brings together live music and experts to offer mental health support to Edinburgh residents

The Festival of Positive Psychology will bring talks, live music, performance, art and games about public mental health to Edinburgh on 5 March.

Shalhavit Simcha-Cohen

PosiFest is led by a University of Edinburgh PhD researcher, and is open to anyone in the city region. The initiative will take place from noon until midnight at The Pear Tree beer garden, 38 W Nicolson Street. 

All the acts and activities within this event are designed to share the principles of positive psychology, the scientific study of what makes people flourish within happy, fulfilling, meaningful lives. Founder and director of PosiFest, PhD researcher at The University of Edinburgh, Shalhavit Simcha-Cohen, created PosiFest as an innovative approach to give the local community the helpful, engaging mental health support they want. 


“Most public mental health resources are only available to people in crisis, and even those remain largely inaccessible because they don’t engage people in the ways they like to be engaged,” she explains. “PosiFest is changing that. We’re a real festival: it’s fun! You’re connecting with people, celebrating, playing together, and at the same time you’re picking up new life skills, tools and perspectives–backed by science–to help you make your world a more positive place.” 

Shalhavit Simcha-Cohen


The line-up of the talks includes Emma Harper, Member of the Scottish Parliament, Dr Tal Ben-Shahar, professor at Harvard University, and Prof. Matthias Schwannauer, Head of the School of for Health and Social Science at the University of Edinburgh .