David Cohen

David Cohen

Professor, Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development

Education:

Ph.D. in Social Welfare, University of California, Berkeley; M.S.W., Carleton University; B.A. in Psychology, McGill University

Areas of Interest:

Drugs/Controlled Substances, Mental Health

Phone:

(310) 206-2698

Email:

cohen@luskin.ucla.edu

Office Location:

5214, Public Affairs

David Cohen’s research looks at psychoactive drugs (prescribed, licit, and illicit) and their desirable and undesirable effects as socio-cultural phenomena “constructed” through language, policy, attitudes, and social interactions. He also documents treatment-induced harms, and pursues international comparative research on mental health trends, especially involving alternatives to coercion. Public and private institutions in the U.S., Canada, and France have funded him to conduct clinical-neuropsychological studies, qualitative investigations, and epidemiological surveys of patients, professionals, and the general population.

In his clinical work for over two decades, he’s developed person-centered methods to withdraw from psychiatric drugs and given workshops on this topic around the world. He designed and launched the CriticalThinkRx web-based Critical Curriculum on Psychotropic Medication for child welfare professionals in 2009, since taken by thousands of practitioners. Tested in a 16-month longitudinal controlled study, CriticalThinkRx was shown to reduce psychiatric prescribing to children in foster care.

He has authored or co-authored over 100 book chapters and articles. Recent co-authored books include Your Drug May be Your Problem (1999/2007), Critical New Perspectives on ADHD (2006), and Mad Science (2013).

David Cohen previously taught at Université de Montréal and Florida International University. In Montreal, he directed the Health & Prevention Social Research Group, and at FIU, he was PhD Program Director and Interim Director of School of Social Work. He held the Fulbright-Tocqueville Chair to France in 2012.

David has received awards for his publications, research, teaching, mentoring, and advocacy. His views have been published in leading newspapers and other popular media.