Roberto Maluenda Gatica

Thesis title: Therapist mentalization capacity, therapeutic process and outcome within an evidence based-treatment for psychosis


I started my PhD in January 2019. Previous to this, in 2017, I graduated in MSc in Psychiatric Research at the Institute of Psychiatry at King's College London. In 2012, I obtained my Master of Clinical Psychology at the Andrés Bello University in Chile. 

Prior to starting my doctoral studies, I worked in private practice and the Acute Psychiatric Day Hospital of Quilpue, Chile (2012-2016) providing outpatient treatment for people with severe mental illness, including individuals struggling with psychosis, bipolar and personality disorders. I worked for more than seven years in psychiatric rehabilitation implementing the Integrated Psychological Therapy (IPT) for the Treatment of Neurocognition, Social Cognition, and Social Competency in Schizophrenia Patients. Currently, I am pursuing my PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of Edinburgh (UK) funded by the Advanced Human Capital Program, of the National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research (CONICYT-CHILE). I am particularly interested in the field of psychotherapy research and how the therapeutic alliance between therapist and client could be a predictor of treatment success as well as, how the impact of therapist reflective function (mentalization) may enhance the therapeutic alliance and address negative transactions between patients and therapists.


2016-2017 Master of Science in Psychiatric Research, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, UK

2014-2015 Diploma (PGDip) in Mental Health for Public Health, School of Medicine, Universidad de Valparaíso, Chile           

2010-2012 Master in Clinical Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Universidad Nacional Andrés Bello, Chile

2005-2010 BA Bachelor (Hons) in Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Universidad Nacional Andrés Bello, Chile

2002-2005 BA Bachelor in Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Education and Social Sciences, Universidad Nacional Andrés Bello, Chile


Research summary

My main research themes have concentrated on how to improve the well-being of patients with severe mental disorders. Particularly those patients who are suffering from psychosis and personality disorders so, they can take advantage of their opportunities for recovery in acute mental health services. 

Current research interests

Currently, my research interests are concentrated in psychotherapy integration and difference, therapeutic relationship and alliance, therapist position and experience, treatment impasse and failure and the function of the mentalization capacity on the therapeutic alliance and treatment impasses.

Past research interests

My past research has interested in treating cognition, motivation, and facilitating recovery among people with severe mental illness. My work was related to cognitive rehabilitation in schizophrenia patients and develop supported employment for those patients.