Chatbots and the shaping of mental health recovery

Start date

01 July 2022

End date

30 June 2023


Recovery is ubiquitous and the main paradigm in mental health policy and practice. At the same time, no-one can agree on what recovery means and it remains a vague concept which defies definitional consensus. It is also political. Recent developments in artificial intelligence (AI) add further important dimensions and dynamics to these matters. AI-based chatbots are increasingly being used in the mental health field yet very little attention is being paid to how they relate to the concept of mental health recovery. The proposed study therefore asks: to what extent are chatbots both shaped by, and shaping, the concept of mental health recovery?

Aims and objectives

Research is currently being conducted across three arms:

  1. Interviews with individuals who are using chatbots
  2. An analysis of circa 3000 app reviews
  3. Focus groups with non-users.




Meadows, R., Hine, C. and Suddaby, E., 2020. Conversational agents and the making of mental health recovery. Digital health6, p.2055207620966170.

Public engagement

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Research themes

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