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Filipa Alves-Costa

PhD candidate, Department of Psychology & Centre for Death and Society, University of Bath

Filipa has a Degree in Psychology and Master’s Degree in Justice/Forensic Psychology (University of Minho, Portugal, 2011). She has been working in a variety of fields in Psychology, both from a research and intervention point of view (e.g., domestic violence – intervention and assessment, campus victimisation, cognitive stimulation and adult resilience) in Portugal and in the UK. She is currently completing a PhD at the University of Bath (Department of Psychology & Centre for Death and Society).

Many people are bereaved through homicide (murder or manslaughter) each year, both in the UK and internationally. Close to half a million people (437,000) were killed by homicide across the world in 2012 (UNODC, 2013). In research terms, limited attention historically has been given to this specific form of victimisation and relatively little is known about the outcomes/impact, coping strategies post experience. There is also little knowledge about the best psychological interventions to support these individuals.

This PhD seeks to address these limitations by adding crucial information to this field of knowledge and providing insight into the trajectory post-experience across the lifespan. In addition, current models of bereavement will be reviewed to consider whether they apply to bereavement that has occurred in such traumatic circumstances (i.e., following murder or manslaughter). Findings from the empirical research will have both clinical and policy implications, such as potentially validating effective interventions and providing guidance on how best to support such individuals.


  • –present
    PhD candidate, Centre for Death and Society, University of Bath