Meet the Team

The Assured study is led by researchers at City, University of London and in collaboration with experts across the UK.

Professor Rose McCabe, Chief Investigator

Rose is a psychologist specialising in professional-patient communication in mental health care. She records professional-patient encounters and micro-analyses verbal and nonverbal communication.

Dr Lucy Goldsmith, Research Fellow

Lucy is an experienced researcher in mental health. Her work spans health services evaluation, innovations in healthcare, and preventative medicine. Her work often focuses on tackling inequalities in healthcare, incorporating both quantitative and qualitative methods. She a member of the Movement for Global Mental Health International Advisory Board, and an honorary member of the Global Mental Health Peer Network 

Alexandra Bakou, Trial Manager

Alexandra has a background in psychology and neurosciences. She works as a Trial Manager for the Assured Study. Her PhD focused on investigating the relationship between negative affect and hazardous drinking, identifying mechanisms and developing brief, evidence-based interventions.  She has a particular interest in addiction and substance use.

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Mimi Suzuki, Research Assistant

Mimi is a psychology graduate with an MSc in Clinical Mental Health Sciences. She works at the Unit for Social and Community Psychiatry as a Research Assistant for the Assured study. She is interested in how health systems have an impact on mental health. 

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Zak Evernden, Research Assistant

Zak is a researcher with a particular interest in mental health and research methods. He graduated with an MSc in Forensic Psychology, and now works as a Research Assistant on the Assured study in the Coventry & Warwickshire area 

Tanja Christensen, Research Assistant

Tanja is a Psychology Graduate and Research Practitioner with three years experience working in research delivery. She has worked on a variety of studies, namely within dementia, perinatal mental health and chronic low mood research. She is interested in providing as many people as possible the opportunity to take part in research.

Aneta Zarska, Research Assistant

Aneta is a final year PhD student at City, University of London, researching the link between suicide and psychological trauma, with a specific focus on trauma-informed care in the emergency department for people who self-harm. Aneta is interested in suicide prevention, PTSD/C-PTSD and other trauma-related mental health issues, and exploring people’s lived experiences through qualitative research. She previously obtained an undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Glasgow and a MSc degree in War & Psychiatry at King’s College London, and she also has clinical experience working in psychiatric settings.

Aamena Akubat, Clinical Research Nurse

Aamena is a Senior Psychiatric Nurse within a Liaison Psychiatry team based in an Accident and Emergency (A&E) department. She is supporting the research study as a Clinical Research Nurse and will be conducting follow-up sessions. Aamena is keen to better the care and support for people who present to A&E during mental health crisis and shape the aftercare following their visit, to aid effective support.

Ella Rowbotham, Research Assistant

Ella is a BSc Psychology graduate from the University of Exeter, where she remained for training in low-intensity Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and qualified as a Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner, gaining clinical experience in the local NHS Talking Therapies for Anxiety and Depression service. Prior to this, she worked as a support worker with adults transitioning from secure services to the community. She is interested in applying her clinical learning in a research capacity, and understanding how to improve access to services for underrepresented populations.  

Emerie Sheridan, Research Assistant

Emerie has a BSc in Medical Science (Neuroscience) from the University of Exeter and an MSc in Translational Neuroscience from Imperial College London. Prior to joining the Assured team, she worked as a research assistant at Imperial College researching eating disorders in adolescents. She is interested in the link between emotional dysregulation and mental health, and improving mental health care in emergency and acute settings.

Louise Coombes, Research Assistant

Louise is a recent graduate of the University of Edinburgh where she completed her MSc in Global Mental Health and Society. In her dissertation, Louise explored how assessment tools for PTSD and trauma-related distress are being culturally adapted and validated for use in Low- and Middle-Income Countries. Prior to completing her MSc, Louise worked as an Occupational Therapist in acute mental health services in Central London. Louise is passionate about using research to make health systems and services work better for the people who use them. 

Mayuri Jasenthuliyana, Intern

Mayuri holds a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and Psychology. She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Psychology in Health and Well-Being at City, University of London. As a part of her Master’s degree, she joined the Assured team because she believes the study can positively impact the lives of thousands of people, and is motivated by the opportunity to contribute to a cause that holds significant importance in society. She is interested in promoting mental health well-being.

Hema Kalyanasundaram, Intern

Hema is from India. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology and over four years’ experience working in contract research organisations. Her introduction to the field of clinical research encouraged her to seek a Master’s degree in the same discipline, and she decided to complete her MRes in Clinical Research at City, University of London. She chose City because of the course modules, particularly the module on work-based clinical research placement. It was through this module that she became involved in the ASSURED Study.

Katie Webb, Research Assistant 

Katie has a BSc in Psychology from Bournemouth University and an MSc in Psychology, Culture and Evolution from Brunel University London. Before joining the Assured team, she worked as a Research Assistant at the University of York, investigating a brief gender-sensitive psychological intervention for male NHS workers, she has also previously worked in various roles in the health and social care sector. Katie is passionate about improving access and outcomes in mental health services.


Dr Peter Aitken, Devon Partnership NHS Trust
Professor Vera Araujo Soares, University of Twente
Professor Richard Byng, Plymouth University
Professor Chris Dickens, University of Exeter
Professor Richard Hooper, Queen Mary University of London
Dr Domenico Giacco, University of Warwick
Professor Navneet Kapur, University of Manchester
Dr Will Lee, University of Exeter
Professor Borislava Mihaylova, Queen Mary University of London
Paul Norris, Binary Vision
Professor Stefan Priebe, Queen Mary University of London
Dr Peter Riou, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust
Dr Mary Ryan, PPI representative
Professor Alan Simpson, Kings College London
Dr Helen Smith, Devon Partnership NHS Trust