Maria Valkovskaya

Research Assistant


Research Interests

At the moment my research interests are broad and include predispositions for depression among people in low and middle income countries and support available to them. I am also interested in investigating the process of brain injury rehabilitation, neurological disorders, especially dementia and autism, as well as eating disorders. I am very passionate about service users’ involvement in research, tackling stigma around mental health issues and improving quality of life of people with long-term conditions.

At UCL I am involved in research about genetic and environmental risk factors for depression in the population of Pakistan aiming to reveal specific predispositions for depression in the population with diverge ancestry. My aspiration is to expand awareness about the prevalence of mental health conditions in low and middle income countries and improve the process of diagnosis and treatment of complex disorders in the population with non-European ancestry, thus reducing inequality.


I received my undergraduate and Master’s degrees in Classics, from Moscow State University. There I conducted an ethnographic qualitative research about everyday life of common people in the Roman Empire as it was presented in “Philippic Histories” by Pompeius Trogus. I later graduated from The Open University in the UK with a degree in Psychology with Counselling. In my undergraduate research I focused on the relationship between social media use, body image and well-being in young women. I am currently an MSc student at King’s College London studying Psychology and Neuroscience of Mental Health and expanding my knowledge about complex disorders from the neuroscientific point of view.