Responsibility without blame

This project is led by Professor Hanna Pickard and has received funding from the Wellcome Trust.

Is it possible to hold someone responsible for a wrongdoing but not blame them? This is the central concept of Hanna's current project, which draws on her experiences of working clinically with people with personality disorders and complex needs (for example, drug addiction). 

Funding from the Wellcome Trust has enabled Hanna to develop her clinical work from in-person training to a freely available, interactive, online e-learning module, making a general ‘Responsibility without Blame’ training accessible to anyone anywhere who is interested. It will be of particular relevance to mental health and allied professionals, prison officers, carers, and police officers. The online training website is now live, and can be accessed here:

The ‘responsibility without blame’ framework articulates the clinical stance underpinning many forms of effective treatment for disorders involving harmful behaviour. The key idea is simple yet surprising. Responsibility and blame are conceptually distinct: responsibility relates to the person under consideration and concerns whether they have choice and control, while blame relates to us and how we choose to respond when people make unwise choices or engage in harmful behaviour. Clarifying this distinction enables the development of practices that hold people responsible and accountable in order to facilitate learning and change, but without blaming them for their actions.

In the media

RWB - Website Screenshot