S77: Skillness – an empowering approach to the ‘mental illness in work’ conversation.

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By September 17, 2019 No Comments

Authors: JR Baker, Amira Vijayanayagam

Year: 2019

Event: 2019 TheMHS Conference

Subject: Skillness – an empowering approach to the ‘mental illness in work’ conversation.

Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers



Dr J.R. Baker is the CEO of Primary & Community Care services and a registered psychologist. He has extensive experience in health innovation, the management of community-based health and mental health programs, population health planning, education and training, program design and development, primary care engagement, and stakeholder management. He completed a BA in Psychology from Brown University, a Graduate Diploma in Public Sector Innovation from the University of Technology Sydney, a Postgraduate Diploma in Psychology from Monash University, a Master of Psychology from Swinburne University and a PhD in Psychology from Swinburne University. His publication record includes papers and presentations on ICT and productivity, human factors, ICT usage and wellbeing, workforce development and training, capacity and capability building in primary and community care, cross-sectoral partnership building, and patient journey modelling and service redesign.

Amira Vijayanayagam BA(Hons) MCrim, is Innovation Manager for Primary and Community Care Services Ltd. She is a project management and service design professional, specialised in the development and delivery of innovative solutions to complex social and organisational problems. Before joining PCCS, she trained and worked with the Designing Out Crime and Design Innovation Research Centres (UTS) for a number of years, focusing on the application of Human Centred Design principles to achieve innovation outcomes for government departments, social enterprise organisations, and public companies. Her career has spanned the finance, Government, higher education and community sectors.

Skillness is an innovative new community awareness campaign that aims to reduce the internalized and public stigma associated with mental illness and work. It challenges traditional discourses and imagery on the topic, taking a strengths-based approach to a subject that is historically deficit-based.

This presentation explores the concept development and community engagement processes employed in the development and delivery of SKillness, highlighting the value that can be achieved through a methodological approach to self-reflection, analysis, and by defining key objectives through the lens of empowerment.

Learning Objectives
Learning Objective (1): A case-study approach to a design-led, values-based approach to campaign development.

Using Dorst’s Frame Creation Method. See: Dorst K (2015) Frame Innovation: Create New Thinking by Design, MIT Press, Cambridge

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