The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here:

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Mental Health Matters: An Analysis of the European Union Discourse on Mental Health Since 2005


  • Charlotte Couque

Summary, in English

In recent decades, the need to tackle mental health issues and promote mental well-being has been increasingly put in the socio-political spotlight. As a first step towards creating a European strategy on mental health, the European Commission published the Green Paper, Improving the mental health of the population: Towards a strategy on mental health for the European Union in 2005. This master’s thesis aims to thematically track the development of the EU discourse on the topic of mental health from 2005 until the present time. In particular, the objectives and goals of the European Union concerning the mental health of European citizens are examined through a discourse analysis. Four documents from the European Commission and the Council of the European Union are included in the study. The results show that in the selected documents, mental health is discursively represented as a key priority. It is also envisioned as a positive mental health and as a human right. Additionally, the European Commission emphasises the multisectoral involvement required for a comprehensive European mental health strategy. The findings of the paper provide an important entry point to the discussion on the relevance and scope of EU public mental health action.


Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Master's degree (two years)


  • Law and Political Science
  • Social Sciences
  • Languages and Literatures


  • discourse analysis
  • mental health
  • positive mental health
  • human rights
  • European Commission
  • European Union
  • European studies


  • Mattias Nowak