Dr Cate T Curtis

Senior Lecturer

Qualifications: BA Cant, BSocSc(Hons), PhD Waikato

School of Psychology


About Cate

Prior to commmencing tertiary studies, I worked within community organisations, focusing on the areas of disadvantaged women and youth, and (un)employment. My current research is broadly in the area of women's wellbeing; specific projects include female self-harming behaviour in general and social factors implicated both in engaging in self-harm and in recovery as well as the construction of  notions of 'risk' and 'resilience'.


Crime; Gender; Psychology; Social Science Research; Women and Gender Studies; Youth

Social and community psychology; mental health and well-being, particularly women's; social construction and stigmatisation of mental health/illness; self-harm (including suicidality); psychology of girls and women.

Research Interests

My research interests are centred around social factors in the wellbeing of young people, especially young women. These interests fall into three main areas:

  • the practical impacts of health policy, as it relates to mental illness and mental health services, for example, the ways people diagnosable with mental illness make sense of their experiences
  • intitation and cessation of deliberate self-harm, especially in young women, including help-seeking.
  • resilience amongst young 'at risk' women, especially social factors.

I have also published on public perceptions of the forensic use of DNA, and research methods.

Please note that some of the publications listed are in my previous name, Wilson

Recent Publications

  • Brennan, S., Robertson, N. R., & Curtis, C. (2017). Shame and resilience: A New Zealand based exploration of resilient responses to shame. In E. Vanderheiden, & M. Claude-Helene (Eds.), The Value of Shame: Exploring a Health Resource in Cultural Contexts (pp. 201-221). Springer. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-53100-7_9

  • Curtis, C. (2016). Giving voice versus gate-keeping: Negotiating complexities in research collaborations. In Qualitative Methods Conference: Collaboration considered: Complexities and possibilities across communities and cultures. Conference held at Glasgow, United Kingdom.

  • Merdian, H. L., Moghaddam, N., Boer, D. P., Wilson, N., Thakker, J., Curtis, C., & Dawson, D. (2016). Fantasy-driven versus contact-driven users of child sexual exploitation material: Offender classification and implications for their risk assessment. Sexual Abuse: a journal of research and treatment, -online, 1-24. doi:10.1177/1079063216641109

  • Curtis, C. (2016). Feminism in psychology: Aotearoa/New Zealand and beyond. Women's Studies Journal, 30(2), 6-22.

View all research publications by Cate Curtis

Contact Details

Name  Extn.  Username  Room  Department
Curtis, Dr Cate 9207 ccurtis J.1.27 Psychology, School of