David Clark is an Emeritus Professor of Psychology who has worked in the addiction and mental health fields for over 35 years. His work is based on the core values of authenticity, compassion, connection, courage, creativity, empathy and forgiveness.
David has an extensive knowledge and experience of biological, psychological and sociological aspects of addiction and mental health recovery and healing, as well as community development and storytelling initiatives.
During the past 15 years, David has been a writer, educator, researcher, website developer, film producer, recovery advocate and recovery coach. He played a key role in the development of the addiction recovery advocacy movement in the UK and in advocating recovery-based care worldwide. He moved from the UK to Perth, Western Australia, in 2008.
David was initially a neuroscientist for 25 years, having trained with a Nobel Laureate (Prof Arvid Carlsson) and been the recipient of a number of awards for his research. His research on brain dopamine systems was widely cited and his laboratory, which he ran for 15 years, was a world leader in studying the role of dopamine in addiction.
In 2000, David decided that focusing on brain chemistry and using drug treatment was not the answer to helping people overcome addiction and mental health problems. He developed the grassroots initiative Wired In, which was hailed as visionary in its approach to empowering individuals, families and communities to recover from drug and alcohol use problems.
As part of this initiative, David developed the web community Wired In To Recovery, which provided key information about recovery, a collection of Recovery Stories, an empathic environment where people supported each other, and a strong voice for recovering people. The community had 4,000 members and generated over 7,500 blogs.
In 2013, David launched Recovery Stories, which provides an environment where role models and their personal narratives play an important role in helping people recover from addiction.
Later in the same year, David developed the Sharing Culture initiative, along with Professor Marion Kickett and filmmaker Michael Liu. Sharing Culture focuses on the healing of historical trauma and its consequences in Indigenous people. David launched the Sharing Culture website, which provides key information about historical trauma, healing and Indigenous culture, where he blogs regularly.
David and Michael are currently trying to raise funding to produce a documentary film on the healing of historical trauma, as well as an education service and advocacy campaign focused on the same topic. David is also developing a multimedia iBook on recovery.