Reclaiming Recovery: Critical Reflections on the Use of the Recovery Approach in Mental Health and Suicide Prevention among Chinese Communities in the UK and Hong Kong

Activity: Talks or PresentationsPublic Lecture


The recovery movement originated in the US in the late 1980s, with service users challenging the dominant psychiatric power in mental health system and advocating for seeing recovery as a self-determined journey with self-defined goals. Since then, the concepts of Recovery Approach have been mainstreamed in mental health policies in Anglophone countries. However, its implementation under neoliberalism in these countries has been criticised. This seminar will consist of three parts. First, I will review the debates over the controversy of the Recovery Approach. Second, I will present the findings of a study that explores the way social inequalities shape the journeys of Chinese mental health service users in the UK. Rather than giving up the concept of recovery, I argue for the need to reclaim and reconceptualise it as a project of community that puts social justice at the core and tackle multilevel inequalities. Third, based on the debates and empirical research overseas, I will discuss the application of the Recovery Approach in the local context, with a particular focus on suicide prevention in Hong Kong.
Period15 Dec 2020
Held atHong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences, the University of Hong Kong , Hong Kong
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • Mental Health
  • Recovery
  • The United Kingdom
  • Hong Kong
  • Chinese
  • Suicide