Special Journal Series:


    1. Zoodsma, M., Schaafsma, J., Sagherian-Dickey, T., & Friedrich, J. (2021). These Are Not Just Words: A Cross-National Comparative Study of the Content of Political Apologies. International Review of Social Psychology34(1), 15. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/irsp.503


Countries around the world increasingly try to redress past human rights violations by offering apologies. The debates surrounding many of these political apologies suggest they do not necessarily satisfy victims’ needs. Little is known, however, about the actual content of these apologies and the extent to which they include the elements that are often seen as essential to healing processes. In this exploratory study, we conducted a cross-national comparative analysis of the texts of political apologies (N = 203, offered by 50 countries) and coded whether they included a statement of sorry, apology, or regret (IFID), and an acknowledgement of wrongdoing, acceptance of responsibility, promise of non-repetition, promise of reparations, recognition of victim suffering, victim re-inclusion, victim praise, or a recognition of moral values/norms. We found that the majority of political apologies only include a selection of these elements, with some countries offering more comprehensive apologies than others. Most apologies, however, do contain an IFID, an acknowledgment of wrongdoing and a recognition of suffering, although there is variation in how this is expressed. This variation can be linked to the receiving group (i.e., within-country or not), the contentiousness of the apology in a country and – albeit weakly – the cultural context. Based on these findings, we suggest that when considering the impact of political apologies, it is crucial to consider quantity (how many apology components are included) as well as quality (how this is done).


Patel, N. (2019). Human rights-based approach to applied psychology. European Psychologist, 24, 113–124. https://doi.org/10.1027/1016-9040/a000371. This version of the article may not completely replicate the final version published in the European Psychologist. It is not the version of record and is therefore not suitable for citation.


Human rights and applied psychology share one key focus, amongst others: health and well- being. This article addresses the nature of human rights and their relevance to applied psychology and healthcare. Whilst human rights and psychology share many values, their limitations are intertwined, and human rights are contested. Yet, human rights offer a tool to applied psychologists, one which can help defend the human rights of those we work with and support. A human rights-based approach (HRBA) is defined, one which draws on a human rights framework and some key principles of human rights and considers their relevance to psychological practice, research, advocacy and pedagogy. Competencies for HRBA to applied psychology are identified and the professional stance of practitioner- activist is posited as apt for using a HRBA in applied psychology.