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About City

Melanie DeMarco

PhD student

Department of Psychology

E: abbw279@city.ac.uk

Thesis title: Psychological wellbeing among healthcare employees

Supervisors: Professor Carla Willig and Dr Paul Flaxman

Overview and research interests

Melanie's research is comprised of two studies. Study 1 made use of a mixed methods research design to assess the psychological wellbeing of healthcare employees working within the National Health System in Malta. Firstly, the psychological wellbeing of these employees was assessed with the use of the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28). Then focus groups and interviews were used to explore the possible sources of psychological distress as well as their coping strategies. The participants' ideas about psychological support at work were also explored.

Study 2 drew from an action research design to promote psychological wellbeing among a group of physiotherapists working at an outpatient physiotherapy department within the National Health System in Malta. The wellbeing team met monthly for six months. Grounded theory was used to analyse the transcripts. This intervention has led to the creation and facilitation of newly emerging structures that can aid in enhancing the wellbeing in the workplace for the co-researchers and their colleagues.

Research interests

  • Action research
  • Psychological wellbeing at work


Journal articles

  • Demarco, M. & Willig, C. (2011). Significant Processes in Action Research with a group of physiotherapists. Counselling Psychology Review, 26(4), 31-40.

Conference presentations

  • 'Promoting Wellbeing among Healthcare Employees: An Action Research'. An oral presentation at The 12th European Congress of Psychology, Istanbul 2011, 4-8th July.