Birgit Bork Mathiesen

Birgit Bork Mathiesen

!!Lektor, cand. psych

Research fields

  • Personality Disorders. Theory, assessment, diagnosis, treatment.
  • Psychotherapy research
  • Supervision research
  • Neuropsychology and clinical psychology, especially in relation to personality disorders/borderline, personality change after brain injury, and neuro-psychoanalytic theories.
  • Psychoanalytic theory and psychotherapy


Research group memberships

  • Department of Psychology: Centre for Psychotherapy Research, of which the former Centre for Supervision is now part
  • Department of Psychology: Centre for Psychoanalysis
  • The Institute for Personality Theory and Psychopathology (IPTP): Deputy Head of the executive committee. The institute is the Danish branch of the International Society for the Study of Personality Disorders (ISSPD)
  • The Nordic Psychotherapy Training and Supervision Project (NORTRAS). A collaboration between Departments of Psychology in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. Participating together with Associate Professor Jan Nielsen from Dep. of Psychology, University of Copenhagen


Research: brief description

Birgit Bork Mathiesen is Associate Professor in clinical psychology at the Department of Psychology, University of Copenhagen. With a background in clinical neuropsychology combined with a 3 year-postgraduate education as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist, my research career started with my Ph.D.-dissertation on Personality Change after Brain Injury. This lead to a Post Doc-project on similarities and differences in borderline and organic personality disorder, and an ongoing research related to personality disorders, neuropsychological assessment and personality assessment, and psychoanalytic theory & assessment of personality organization, as well as psychotherapy and psychotherapy training and supervision. As a member of the Centre for Psychotherapy Research, I took part in the Copenhagen Bulimia Trial, both in the assessment of personality disorders and the psychodynamic profile of the patients, and as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist. We still publish new papers based on data from this study. Internationally, and in collaboration with Associate Professor Jan Nielsen, we have met with colleagues from Norway and Sweden over the last couple of years in the NORTRAS-group, discussing the initiation of research in our students’ education and professional development as psychotherapists. We have data on our students’ Self-efficacy-development, and are submitting a systematic review on group supervision shortly.


Current research projects

  • Supervised Marianne Skovgaard Thomsen’s Ph.D. project on Neuropsychological Impairment in Women with Borderline Personality Disorder: A Clinical Study of Cognitive Impairments Associated with Childhood Trauma, Borderline Personality Dimensions and Changes in Cognition after Six Months Treatment with Mentalization Based Therapy. Two outcome papers are resubmitted after review to Journal of Personality Disorders, a third paper on the history of the neuropsychology in borderline personality disorder is ready for submission. The thesis will be handed in before December 2015.
  • “Group supervision as psychotherapy training method - An updated review of the research” (Pedersen, S.H., Mathiesen, B.B., & Nielsen, J.), almost ready for submission. Our first outcome related to the NORTRAS-collaboration
  • “Self-efficacy beliefs in psychology students training to become therapists: Does working with real clients matter?” Under revision.


Teaching and supervision at BA, KA, and PhD. Levels in:

  • Master’s theses
  • Clinical psychology with personality, personality disorders, and neuroscience aspects

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