Dr Catherine Hamilton-Giachritsis PhD, CPsychol, AFBPsS

School of Psychology
Senior Lecturer in Forensic Psychology
Assistant Director, Centre for Forensic and Criminological Psychology

Contact details

School of Psychology
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Catherine Hamilton-Giachritsis is an HCPC registered Forensic Psychologist and Clinical Psychologist with an interest in child maltreatment and family violence, including risk assessment, impact of early institutionalisation and long-term outcomes (e.g., psychopathology and/or resilience). She also studies vulnerability to online grooming and impact on young people.


Qualifications and professional registration

  • BSc (Hons) Psychology, University of Birmingham
  • PhD Psychology, University of Birmingham (1998)
  • Chartered Forensic Psychologist (2000)
  • PG Cert in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (2003)
  • Lateral transfer to Clinical Psychology; British Psychological Society (2006)
  • HCPC registered 2009
  • Associate Fellow BPS (2010)


Dr Catherine Hamilton-Giachritsis (CPsychol, AFBPsS) is an HCPC registered Forensic Psychologist and Clinical Psychologist and is currently Senior Lecturer and Assistant Director of the Centre for Forensic and Criminological Psychology at the University of Birmingham. Catherine previously worked for Birmingham Social Services Department undertaking assessments of families in child care proceedings and working in a residential unit for families where child maltreatment had occurred or was suspected. In her clinical work, Catherine has worked with both child and adult victims of all forms of maltreatment. Her research focuses on all forms of child maltreatment and family violence, particularly recurrent maltreatment, risk assessment, the impact of early institutionalisation, and long-term outcomes from and resilience to abuse and neglect. This includes sexually abusive behaviour in children and adolescents. Alongside numerous journal articles, Catherine has also co-authored information leaflets for WHO and co-edited/written three books.

Direct impact from research:

Catherine has co-founded a family assessment and intervention programme for health visitors to target support to families in need (running in Essex for over a decade), as well as been co-PI on three European Union Daphne/ World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Office for Europe funded projects on pre-school children in institutions across Europe. As well as being presented at two high-level conferences co-organised with WHO Regional Office for Europe, it has been the focus of training for policy makers and senior managers in sixteen European countries. This work has had significant impact for young children cared for in institutions and has been discussed at the European Parliament and UN General Assembly, being part of the findings considered prior to the new UN guidance on young children in institutional care.


Catherine is Director of the Doctorate in Forensic Psychology Practice (full time and part time). This course provides practice placements over three years alongside academic teaching from university staff and guest speakers. As well as organising and managing all aspects of the course, Catherine teaches on topics such as:

  • risk assessment in child protection
  • cognitive behavioural therapy
  • the use of supervision and reflective practice
  • HCPC code of conduct

At undergraduate level, Catherine contributes to a final year Forensic Psychology module:

  • psychopathy
  • early prediction and prevention of child maltreatment

Postgraduate supervision

Catherine supervises trainees on the Doctorate in Forensic Psychology Practice and the CPD Doctorate in Forensic Psychology, as well as PhD students. Details of phd topics can be found on www.findaphd.com or individuals can e-mail directly to enquire. Topics include:

  • Risk assessment / early prediction and prevention of child maltreatment (including risk to siblings)
  • Long term outcomes following child maltreatment and family violence
  • Resilience and attachment
  • Internet grooming (victim perspective)
  • Institutionalisation of young children
  • The role of fathers in families


ORCID: 0000-0001-9796-2107

Scopus Author ID:  8651728400

ResearcherID: B-7844-2013

Catherine's main research interests and publications are recurrent child maltreatment, early prediction and prevention of child maltreatment, and the long-term consequences of maltreatment (including attachment and resilience). Catherine’s international work includes jointly co-ordinating three European Union Daphne funded projects looking at young children in institutions in 33 European (including best practice for deinstitutionalisation), which was co-sponsored by the World Health Organisation Regional Office for Europe.

Other research includes adult resilience to childhood trauma; children and young people who sexually offend against others; and vulnerability to online grooming. 

Research group

Other activities

External examiner: Institute of Psychiatry, MSc in Clinical Forensic Psychology (2011-2015)

Committees: Scientific Committee Member; InPACT 2012, InPACT 2013, Portugal; International Scientific Advisory Committee for the Triple P Positive Parenting Programme (2005-7); West Midlands branch British Association for the Study and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (Vice-chair 2002-2005; Chair: 2005-2006; training committee 2012-).

Consultancy Roles: World Health Organisation; British Council

Grant reviewer: ESRC reviewer (2011; 2012); MRC reviewer (2011); ESRC rapporteur (2007)

Editorial boards: Child Abuse Review: 2004-2009; Book Review Editor, Journal of Sexual Abuse (2004-5)

Expert reviewer: The Lancet (IF 30.8); Journal of Public Health (IF 4.4); Child Maltreatment (IF 2.6; 1/32 Family Studies); Trauma, Violence and Abuse (IF 2.6; 3/46 in Criminology and Penology); Journal of Family Psychology (IF 2); Aggressive Behavior (IF 1.69); Child Abuse Review (IF 0.5); British Journal of Forensic Practice; Journal of Sexual Abuse



Browne, K.D., Douglas, J., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., and Hegarty, J. (2006). A Community Health Approach to the Assessment of Infants and their Parents: The CARE programme. Chichester: Wiley.

Browne, K.D., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., Johnson, R., et al. (2005). Mapping the number and characteristics of children under three in institutions across Europe at risk of harm. Birmingham: Birmingham University Press (in collaboration with EU/WHO) ISBN: 0-704-42502-5.

Browne, K.D., Hanks, H., Stratton, P., and Hamilton, C.E. (2002). The Early Prediction and Prevention of Child Abuse: A Handbook.  Chichester: Wiley.

Example chapters

Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., and Sleath, E. (2012). Effects of interpersonal crime on victims. In G. Davies and A.R. Beech (Eds.), Forensic Psychology 2nd edition. Chichester: John Wiley and sons.

Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., Peixoto, C.S., and Melo, A. (2011). Risk. Assessment and evaluation. In T. Magalhães (Ed.), Abuse & Neglect Series. 1. To Improve the Management of Child Abuse and Neglect (pp. 89-132 ). Oporto, Portugal: SPECAN, Soceidade Portuguesa para o Estudo da Criança Abusada e Negligenciada.

Browne, K.D. and Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. (2007). Child abuse: defining, understanding and intervening. In K. Wilson and A. James (Eds.), The child protection handbook, 3rd edition (pp.49-68). Philadelphia: Bailliere Tindall Elsevier.

Stevenson, J. & Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. (2006). A snapshot in time – The role of psychological assessment of children and young people in the Court System. In K. Golding, R. Nissim, L. Stott & H. Dent (Eds.), Thinking psychologically about children who are looked after and adopted: Space for reflection (pp. 135-163). Chichester: Wiley.

Example publications

Barrett, E. and Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. (in press, 2013). A means to an end? How detectives perceive the victim during a simulated investigation of attempted rape. Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling

Marriott, C., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., and Harrop, C. (in press). Factors promoting resilience following childhood sexual abuse. Child Abuse Review.

Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. & Browne, K.D. (2012). Forgotten children? An update on young children in institutions across Europe. Early Human Development, , 88, 911-914

Whittle, H., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., Beech, A., and Collings, G. (2013a). Online Grooming: Characteristics and Concerns. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 18, 62-70.

Whittle, H., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., Beech, A., and Collings, G. (2013b) Vulnerabilities of Young People to Online Grooming. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 18, 135-146.

Hillberg, T., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., and Dixon, L. (2011). Critical review of meta-analyses on the association between child sexual abuse and adult psychopathology. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse. 

Dixon, L., Hamilton-Giachritsis C.E., and Browne, K.D., (2009). Patterns of risk and protective factors in the intergenerational cycle of maltreatment. Journal of Family Violence, 24, 111-122.

Browne, K.D., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E., Johnson, R., & Ostergren, M. (2006). The extent of institutional care for young children across the European region: A cause for concern? British Medical Journal, 332, 485-487.

Browne, K.D. and Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. (2005). The influence of violent media on children and adolescents: A public health approach. The Lancet, 365, 702-710.

Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. & Browne, K.D. (2005) A retrospective study of risk to siblings in abusing families. Journal of Family Psychology, 19(4), 619-624.

Example policy briefings

Browne, K.D., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. et al. (2005). Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect. 2005 European Health Report. Copenhagen: World Health Organisation Regional Office for Europe.

Browne, K.D., Hamilton-Giachritsis, C.E. & Vettor, S. (2007). The Cycles of Violence: the Relationship between Childhood Maltreatment and the Risk of Later Becoming a Victim or Perpetrator of Violence. Policy Briefing. World Health Organisation: Violence and Injury Prevention Programme. Copenhagen. WH