Stephen's early career was spent working in corporate and SME settings. In response to increased work related stress, he began to meditate in the 1990s. After experiencing positive health and wellbeing benefits, he travelled in Europe and Asia investigating different Buddhist and secular meditation systems.
He obtained a BSc in psychology from the Open University in 2017 and an MSc in neuropsychology/cognitive psychology from the University of Kent in 2018. Stephen was then awarded a Vice-Chancellor's scholarship to research the scientific history of mindfulness in 2019.
His academic journey has been supported by work in community social care and academic mentoring. Stephen remains actively involved in communicating knowledge of meditation research through teaching, writing and public engagement.
Stephen adopts an interdisciplinary approach in researching how an ancient spiritual practice became a modern health intervention. His PhD project includes scientific consideration of what has been lost and gained in the relocation of mindfulness from Buddhism to psychology.
The migration of human technologies from non-positivist knowledge systems asks profound questions about how science is created and traditional knowledge treated.
The scientific history of mindfulness illuminates a series of complex processes used to transform Buddhist mindfulness meditation into a pillar of the United Kingdom's healthcare provision and social policy agenda.
Stephen also retains an active research interest in the health and wellbeing implications of nondual compassionate forms of meditation.
Current thesis title
The scientific history of mindfulness: a British perspective.
A graduate member of the British Psychological Society (MBPsS), Stephen also holds membership of the British Society of the History of Science (BSHS) and the UK Association of Buddhist Studies (UKABS).