Dawn Johnson ACBS Board Member - UK And Ireland Chapter

Tell us a bit about yourself

Louise McHugh

I am from a town called Castlebar in Co. Mayo, Ireland. I have a fondness for Mayo Gaelic football. In my personal sphere, I now live in Dublin with my partner Dave, who brings with him the joys of a blended family with his two children, Katherine and Shane. Our household also includes Mia, a snuggly Yorkshire Terrier whose companionship fills our lives with delight and warmth.

Louise McHugh

I studied my undergraduate degree in Psychology at University College Dublin and went on to do my PhD at the National University of Ireland Maynooth. I started my academic career in Swansea University, which means I say ‘is it’ a lot and I understand what a ‘cwtsh’ is.

What do you do?


I am the President of the Association for Contextual Behavioural Science, UK and ROI Chapter.


In current times I work at my alma mater, University College Dublin where I am the Deputy Head of Department in the School (SoP). I am also the director of the University College Dublin Contextual Behavioural Science lab (you can follow us on twitter @UCD_CBSlab).


The lab group is a community of masters, research assistants, doctoral researchers and post docs all interested in furthering the CBS research field. Topics studied at the lab are rule following, the self, perspective taking and process based therapy interventions for farmer mental health, chronic conditions, marginalised groups and young people.


The lab has been funded over the years by the Irish Research Council, the Health Research Board, the National Organisation for Suicide Prevention, UCD Seed Funding and the FBD Trust. During my career I have published over 100 academic papers and written two books on the CBS approach to the self and perspective taking.

Why are you a member of ACBS?

Being a member of ACBS and the UK and ROI chapter has provided me with an academic and professional home. It has opened up access to networking opportunities, research collaborations, workshops, conferences, and also invites to provide workshops and trainings in the area of ACT and RFT. I have attended every ACBS World Conference and UK and ROI bi-annual conference to date – since 2003).

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