Karim Mitha (FRSA, FRSPH)
Karim Mitha has an inter-disciplinary and international academic background. He studied for his Health Studies and Psychology qualifications in Canada, pursued Islamic Studies in London, studied an intensive Arabic programme in Syria, and studied Public Health in the United Kingdom and has obtained a certificate in counselling skills. He is also trained in Mental Health First Aid. Consequently, his research areas and interests are very interdisciplinary in nature. His background in health psychology has enabled him to use mixed-methods research approaches to examine behavioural factors in health outcomes. His current research themes are broadly aligned with diversity issues and cross-cultural care – looking at issues of social exclusion, acculturation, experiences of care, and factors involved in mental ill health. He also engages with social psychology perspectives to examine aspects of social policy, marginalization, religion, and culture within concepts of group process theory, identity, and social representation.
Responsibilities & affiliations
Member - European Health Psychology Society
Fellow - Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures, Commerce
Fellow - Royal Society of Public Health
Division of Health Psychology; Division of Academics, Researchers, Teachers in Psychology; Social Psychology Section - British Psychological Society
Member - The British Sociological Association
Member - Muslims in Britain Research Network
Member - Migration Health and Development Research Initiative
Member - British Islamic Medical Association
Member - Psychologists for Social Change
Co-Convenor- Activism in Sociology
- University of Edinburgh MBChB - Health, Ethics Society: Social Psychiatry, Stigma and Discrimination
- University of Edinburgh MBChB - Health, Ethics Society: Disability, Global Health, Social Determinants of Health.
- University of Edinburgh MOOC Global Mental Health - Culture and Spirituality
- De Montfort University - BA (Health Studies), BSc (Public and Community Health), BSc (Psychology), Bsc (Psychology and Health Studies)
- Human Body
- Research Methods
- Health Improvement
- Health Psychology
- Introduction to Social Research
- Healthcare Management
- Debates and Dilemmas in Healthcare
- Applied Social Research
- Health Promotion and Public Health
- Gender and Health
- Globalisation and Health
- Psychology of Sexuality
Open to PhD supervision enquiries?
Karim's current research interests examine the role of social processes on resilience with common mental disorders (CMDs), ie: depression and anxiety. He is working with Muslims in Scotland and examining the relationship between acculturative processes on subsequent psychological morbidity. The aim is to gain a holistic picture, through examining key community stakeholders and individual experiences, of how Muslims in Scotland undergo various acculturative processes, the role of their faith and ethnic identity, and the impacts of discrimination and integration in their mental health and wellbeing. This research utilises an interdisciplinary approach and employs qualitative methods via an intersectional lens.
2019: "'You'd need an entire WAM': Race, mental health, and disability in academia" - Creating Spaces in Academia BSA PG event, London School of Economics and Political Science, November 2019
"Mental health across cultures", Keynote speaker - Manchester Medical Research Student Society National Undergraduate Conference, February 2019
"Islamophobia, stigma, mental health: Muslims in Scotland" - speaker at Psychology, Equality, and Social Justice, London School of Economics and Political Science, January 2019
2018: "Mental health and Muslim communities", - Fresh Air Edinburgh Radio, December 2018
"Mental health in migrant, South Asian, and Muslim communities:" - MQ Mental Health, November 2018
"Depression, anxiety, and domestic abuse", invited panelist at "The Antomy of Islamic Psychology" - Alif Institute, The East London Mosque October 2018
Advisor to BBC Stories, "It's like a taboo, what will the neighbours say" - July 2018
"Inclusion: The modern place of worship", Invited panelist at Baroness Warsi Foundation event, University of Glasgow, June 2018
“Identity and mental health amongst Scotland’s Muslim community”. Poster presented at British Academy and Wellcome Trust event on Mental Health Policy and Social Science Practice. Edinburgh, March 2018
2017: "Mental health and Muslim communities" - University of Edinburgh Islamic Society, November 14
“Mental health issues within Scottish society" - Sakeenah Society, Radio Ramadan Glasgow, June 2
2016: “Medicine during the Islamic Golden Age” - University of Edinburgh Islamic Society, November 8
2015: Consultation response to ONS Census 2021 on race/religion/ethnicity/language
Peer Reviewer: Social Science and Medicine, Social Science and Medicine - Population Health, Journal of Refugee Studies, Medical Research Council
Affiliated research centres
Current project grants
Aziz Foundation (2019-2020)
Past project grants
MQ Mental Health (2019)
Migration, Ethnicity, Race, and Health Congress bursary (2018)
British Academy ECR Grant – Mental Health Policy and Social Science Practice (2018)
BSA Support Fund (2018)
University of Edinburgh New Network Award (2017)
BPS Annual Conference Postgraduate Bursary (2016);
GLADD Research Prize (2015);
Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Scholarship for Doctoral Study (2015- 2018);
The Institute of Ismaili Studies Research Grant (2012);
Al-Maktoum College of Higher Education Travel Grant (2012)
2019: Mitha, K., Adatia, S., Hankir, A., Tarik, M., & Jaspal, R. "We don't air our dirty laundry": Notions of mental health stigma amongst Australian Muslims. Global Muslim Mental Health Conference. Clare College, University of Cambridge, September 2019
Mitha, K. Intersectional experiences of mental ill health: A case study of Muslims in Scotland. poster presented at MQ Mental Health Data Science conference . Royal College of Physicians. London, February 2019
2018: Muir, M., Anderson, N., Barrell, J., Conway, D., & Mitha, K. Caries experience of children with learning disabilities and autism in Europe - a systematic review. British Association for the Study of Community Dentistry. Cavendish conference centre. London. November 2018
Mitha, K. Identity, Islamophobia, and mental health: A qualitative investigation into mental health needs amongst Scotland’s Muslims. Migration, Ethnicity, Race, and Health World Congress. – European Public Health Association. University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh May 2018 In: In: The European Journal of Public Health , 28(suppl_1), cky047.013, https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/cky047.013
Tan, S., Mitha, K., & Quigley-Legido, H. Effective ways to address the unment NCD needs of Rohingya refugees in Malaysia. Migration, Ethnicity, Race, and Health World Congress - European Public Health Association, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh May 2018. In: The European Journal of Public Health, 28(suppl_1), cky047-196. https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/cky047.196
Mitha K. “Rescued by Scotland”? Identity and resilience amongst Scotland’s Muslim community. British Sociological Association Annual Conference, Northumbria University, Newcastle April 2018
2017: Mitha, K. Muslims in Scotland: Identity, Integration, and Impact on Psychological Wellbeing. British Psychological Society - London and Home Counties Branch Symposium: Identity. Institute for Child Health. University College London. London June 2017.
Mitha, K. "Scotland is 10-20 years behind London anyway": Naratives of identity and inclusion from British Muslims. British Sociological Association Postgraduate Forum Regional Event: Contemporary Racisms in Scotland and England - Interrogating, Comparing, and Learning from Brexit and its Aftermath. Kinning Park Complex. Glasgow. June 2017
Mitha, K. Challenges in mental health service delivery for Scottish Muslims. Public Health in a changing world. Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh. Edinburgh. May 2017
Mitha, K. An overview of integration, inclusion, and mental health needs amongst Scottish Muslims. Migration, ethnicity, and health inequalities. National Institute for Health Research - Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care. School of Health and Related Research, University of Sheffield. Sheffield. April 2017
2016: Mitha, K. Religious identity and its influence on religious discourse in mental health. Mental Health and Cultural Diversity conference, De Montfort University, Leicester, June 2016
Mitha, K. “If it’s not talked about, it doesn’t happen”: Explaining Muslim under-utilization of psychiatric services. Poster presented at The British Psychological Society Annual Conference, East Midlands Conference Centre, Nottingham, April 2016
2015: Mitha, K. “Insights from researching mental health in diasporic Muslim communities”. Globalizing Mental Health, Advances in Research on Globally Accessible Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey, December 2015
Mitha, K. “Awareness of mental illness amongst South Asian Muslim male immigrants”. Poster presented at Scottish Mental Health Research network. Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh, Scotland. October 2015.
Mitha, K., Adatia, S. “Toques and tea, or chapals and chai: Muslims, media, masti, and meaning”. British Association for Islamic Studies, University of London, April 2015.
"Race, Ethnicity, and Postcolonical Studies Postgraduate Conference", with S. Harris and S. Akhtar, University of Glasgow, June 2019
- Mitha, K. "Sufism and Healing". Journal of Spirituality in Mental Health. 21(3): 194-205.
- Mitha, K. "Intersectional spaces of disabled people of colour in academia". Chronically Academic blog
- Mitha, K. "BPS Annual Conference Review". PsyPAG Quarterly, 103: 58-59.
- Mitha, K. "Review of the play The Kite Runner". The Institute of Ismaili Studies 2016 Newsletter, pg 7.
- Mitha, K., Adatia S., & Jaspal, R. "Two cultures, one identity: Formulations of Australian Isma'ili Muslim identity". Contemporary Islam: Dynamics of Muslim Life. 11(1): 41-60.
- Mitha, K. “Review of BPS Annual Conference 2016”. Psych-Talk, 85:10-11.
- Mitha, K. & Adatia, S. “The faith community and mental health resilience amongst Australian Ismaili Muslim youth.” Mental Health, Religion, and Culture. 19(2):192-207.
- Mitha, K. “Identity, Race, and Belonging”. The Psychologist, 28(10): 852-853.
2018-2019 (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine student, external advisor):
- MPH (public health trainee)- "Can the healthy migrant effect provide new insights for commissioning public health services in East London?"
2017-2018 (University of Edinburgh):
- MPH (dental public health trainee) - "Dental health promotion for children with autism spectrum disorders"
2016-2017 (University of Edinburgh)
- MSc (Global Health and Noncommunicable Disease) - " The unmet non-communicable disease needs amongst Rohingya refugees in Malaysia"
- BSc (Medical Sciences) - "Perceptions of mental illness amongst Malay Malaysian women in Edinburgh"
2013-2015 (De Montfort University)
- 2 BSc (Public and Community Health)
- 9 BA (Health Studies)
- 2 MRes