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Dr Stephen Bright

Senior Lecturer

Staff Member Details
Telephone: +61 8 6304 863042597
Campus: Joondalup  
Room: JO31.471R  

Dr Bright oversees the development and delivery of curriculum pertaining to the use of Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) in the context of society.


Stephen has worked as a psychologist within the Mental Health & AOD field for the past 15 years. He is currently Senior Lecturer of Addiction at Edith Cowan University. Stephen is a strong advocate of harm reduction and an evidence-based approach to AOD legislation. He is also interested in the role of certain substances (entheogens) to facilitate spiritual experiences, and their role in psychotherapy.

His PhD related to the public perceptions and media portrayal of AOD use and the implications of this for drug-related harm, including the rapid emergence of new psychoactive substances. This has led to the development of a project that aims to make the Australian media more accountable when reporting on AOD issues:

Stephen is a leading Australian voice on the role of drug policy on emerging drug trends such as synthetic cannabis and darkweb marketplaces.

Professional Associations

  • Founding member and vice-president of PRISM, a not-for-profit organisation that aims to fund positive AOD research.
  • Elected member of the Victorian Alcohol and Drug Association (VAADA) board since 2015
  • Member of the AOD Media Watch Reference Group
  • Peninsula Health's Human Research Ethics Committee since 2012

Awards and Recognition

  • 2012: Awarded a Gold Medal in the Victorian Public Health Awards
  • 2011: Awarded best late breaking paper at the APSAD conference

Research Areas and Interests

  • Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) policy.
  • AOD and the media
  • Emerging drug trends.
  • Psychedelics.
  • Synthetic cannabis.
  • MDMA-assisted psychotherapy.
  • Harm reduction.
  • Role of stigma among people who use drugs
  • Older adults and alcohol.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Curtin University of Technology, 2015.
  • Bachelor of Arts Psychology With Fist Class Honours, Edith Cowan University, 2006.
  • BA (Psych) hons., Edith Cowan University, 2005.


Recent Research Grants

  • Can the quality of life of young adults with Chronic Inflammatory Arthritis [CIA] be improved through participation in a DRUMBEAT© program?,  Healthway (WA Health Promotion Foundation),  Health Promotion Project Grant,  2019 - 2020,  $28,375.
  • Systematic review of chain analysis research for suicide prevention,  Edith Cowan University,  ECU Grant in Aid Scheme,  2018 - 2019,  $16,765.
  • An Open Label Pilot Study of MDMA-Assisted Manualised Psychotherapy among Australians with Chronic, Treatment-Resistant Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),  Edith Cowan University,  School of Medical and Health Sciences Research Grant Scheme 2018,  2018 - 2019,  $8,498.

Recent Publications (within the last five years)

Journal Articles

  • Bright, S., Blatchford, E., Gringart, E., Bettinson, S., (2020), A quantitative exploration of the relationships between regular yoga practice, microdosing psychedelics, wellbeing and personality variables. Australian Journal of Psychology, Accepted (Accepted ), N/A, Pre-Print, Taylor & Francis.
  • Engel, L., Bright, S., Barratt, M., Allen, M., (2020), Positive drug stories: possibilities for agency and positive subjectivity for harm reduction. Addiction Research and Theory, 2020(Article in press), 1-9, DOI: 10.1080/16066359.2020.1837781.
  • Blatchford, E., Bright, S., Engel, L., (2020), Tripping over the other: Could psychedelics increase empathy?. Journal of Psychedelic Studies, 2020(Article in press), 1-8, DOI:
  • Bright, S., Milroy, J., Walsh, K., Blatchford, E., (2020), Medication use among older Australians seeking alcohol and other drug treatment. Australasian Journal on Ageing, 39(3), 287-291, Australia, Wiley-Blackwell, DOI: 10.1111/ajag.12756.
  • Banister, S., Adams, A., Kevin, R., Macdonald, C., Glass, M., Boyd, R., Connor, M., McGregor, I., Havel, C., Bright, S., Vilamala, M., Lladanosa, C., Barratt, M., Gerona, R., (2019), Synthesis and pharmacology of new psychoactive substance 5F‐CUMYL‐P7AICA, a scaffold‐ hopping analog of synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonists 5F‐CUMYL‐PICA and 5F‐CUMYL‐PINACA. Drug Testing and Analysis, 11(2), 279-291, DOI: 10.1002/dta.2491.
  • Bright, S., Walsh, K., Williams, C., (2018), Point Prevalence and Patterns of Mental Health Comorbidity Among People Accessing Australia's First Older Adult-Specific Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Service. Journal of Dual Diagnosis, 14(1), 70-75, DOI: 10.1080/15504263.2017.1380247.
  • Bright, S., Williams, C., (2018), Evaluation of Australia’s first older adult-specific early intervention for reducing alcohol-related harm. Australian Health Review, 42(6), 676-679, DOI: 10.1071/AH17013.
  • Bright, S., Williams, M., (2018), Should Australian Psychology Consider Enhancing Psychotherapeutic Interventions with Psychedelic Drugs? A Call for Research. Australian Psychologist, 53(6), 467-476, United Kingdom, Taylor and Francis, DOI: 10.1111/ap.12345.
  • Bright, S., Williams, C., (2017), Development of Australia’s first older adult-specific early intervention for alcohol-related harm: Feasibility and proof of concept. Australasian Journal on Ageing, 36(1), 52-55, Richmond, Victoria, Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, DOI: 10.1111/ajag.12366.
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