Suicide Cultures

Information about taking part in the project

Information about taking part in the Suicide Cultures project as an interview participant.

Research Interviews for the Suicide Cultures Project

We are exploring local understandings and experiences of suicide in different communities across Scotland.  Each of our three Research Fellows are working across a different region of Scotland. In these three areas*, we are interested in hearing from a range of different people who have been affected by suicide in different ways. 

  • People who have been bereaved by suicide
  • People who have attempted suicide
  • People who work with those who are at risk of suicide.

Our approach is intended to expand current understandings of suicide by listening to first-person experiences. This recognises that those with lived - or living - experience of suicide (including those bereaved by suicide and those working with people who experience suicidal thoughts and behaviours) have valuable knowledge to contribute.

We are interested in exploring people’s experiences of suicide using a range of different methods, including ethnography, interviews and creative methods. 

What will taking part in an interview involve?

Participating in the study will involve being interviewed (face-to-face or online, depending on your preference) on two occasions.

The first interview will follow a more ‘traditional’ format where the researcher will ask you questions about your experience(s) of suicide.

For the second interview you will have the option of different creative approaches: photovoice, walking interview, and mapping. Each interview will be a maximum of two hours, and you can choose to take part in just one interview if you prefer. 

Options for creative interviews


Photovoice is a research approach that asks people to take photographs in order to share their knowledge and experience about a certain topic. You will be asked to take photographs about your understandings and experiences of suicide and then share and discuss your photographs in an interview with the researcher. You can use your phone or camera to take photographs or, if you prefer, the research team can lend you a digital camera.

Walking interview

 A walking interview is a research approach that enables people to engage with their environment and explore the significance of particular places. It allows individuals to ‘show’ not just ‘tell’ what a place means to them. For a walking interview you will be asked to guide the interviewer around places that are important to you.


You may choose to make a map of the route you walked during the walking interview or you can choose to create a map without doing a walking interview. The researcher will provide you with digital and physical maps to help you to create a map of the place(s) you choose.

For more information about each of these methods see the participant information sheets.

Benefits and Risks of Participating

We recognise that sharing experiences related to suicide has the potential to be painful and distressing. It is also important to note that this is a research study and not a therapeutic intervention. However, it is possible that sharing your story with researchers may be a positive experience.

Before deciding to take part, you will have an opportunity to meet and chat with one of the researchers. You will be able to ask any questions you have. You do not have to participate in the study and you can choose to stop participating at any point without any negative consequences. We will seek, as far as possible, to protect your privacy. For more information about how we will use your information and interviews see the information sheets. 

*To protect the anonymity of those who take part in the study, we are not naming the areas we are working in online or in publications. Please contact one of the research team to find out where we are based if you are interested in getting involved in the study, or want to find out more.