Ric Bowl

Ric Bowl

Department of Social Work and Social Care
Director of Community Mental Health Programmes

Contact details

Department of Social Work and Social Care
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Ric is the Director of Community Mental Health Programmes in the Department of Social Policy and Social Work, School of Social Policy.




Ric has worked at the University for a number of years in both Social Policy and Professional and Continuing Education departments and has a commitment to widening participation and the provision of lifelong learning opportunities within Universities. His research and teaching also reflects his commitment to broadening public understanding of mental distress and the actual and potential contribution to society of those who experience such distress.

When not being too serious about these commitments he enjoys good food and wine and spending time in Italy and France and he manages an amateur football side based at the University - Village FC.


As Director of Community Mental Health programmes he has overall responsibility for the (Advanced) Certificate in Mental Health and Deafness; a range of Post Qualifying training programmes for Approved Mental Health Professionals; and the Post Graduate Diploma in Specialist Social Work with Adults.

Ric co-ordinates the East and West Midlands AMHP training programme and contributes sessions on risk assessment and management; legal and moral aspects of the role; social perspectives on mental health and other areas of the teaching. He also runs and contributes teaching to refresher training for AMHPs in risk assessment and management and the application of social perspectives on mental health; co-ordinates the training of Best Interests Assessors; and contributes to a number of Consolidation programmes in Mental Health and Social Work with Adults; and training in Enabling the Learning of Other Professionals.

Postgraduate supervision

He supervises a number of MPhil and PhD students and is happy to consider supervising research into many aspects of mental health.


Ric's most recent research and scholarship has focussed on the role of mental health social work; black service users’ perceptions of mental health services; and the mental health needs of asylum seekers. He has also been responsible for monitoring the Mental Health Act in Sandwell, highlighting interesting differences from previous monitoring elsewhere in the country. He has broad interests in mental health legislation; the contribution of social theory to the understanding of the genesis, maintenance and amelioration of mental distress; risk assessment in mental health; the role of masculinity in shaping men’s experience of mental ill health and our responses to it; in perceptions of older people and services provided to them and in all areas of service user participation.