Dr Kate Derry

Research Associate, School of Indigenous Studies, University of Western Australia

Kate was born, lives, and works on Noongar Boodja. Her father migrated to Australia in 1963 during the Burmese coup d’état and is a descendant of the Shan people of Myanmar. Her mother was born in Piawaning and raised on Gnaraloo Station. She completed her PhD in social and developmental psychology at the University of Western Australia in 2019.

Her thesis investigated the development of self in children, adolescents, and adults. Using her understanding of self-concept, personality, emotions, and psychometrics, she has worked in the areas of organisational psychology, human factors, education, and adolescent suicide prevention.

During her PhD, she was encouraged to explore her own racial-ethnic identity and became interested in the relationship between culture and health, and the role of cultural identity in suicide prevention. Kate started her post-doctorate with Professor Pat Dudgeon in late 2019 and is excited to use evidence-based approaches and strengths-focused solutions to empower Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, and other Indigenous peoples. She is currently working with the Centre of Best Practice in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention and the Transforming Indigenous Mental Health and Wellbeing Project.