Digby Tantam

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Digby John Howard Tantam (born 15 March 1948) is a British psychiatrist and Professor of Psychotherapy.[1] He is currently Clinical Professor of Psychotherapy at the University of Sheffield; Consultant Psychiatrist and Psychotherapist, Sheffield Care Trust; and a partner at Dilemma Consultancy Ltd. His main research interests are social and emotional wellbeing, emotional contagion, nonverbal communication, applied philosophy, and autism spectrum disorders.[2]


Tantam was educated at Rokeby School and St Paul's School in London then Oxford University, with doctorates from London and Harvard Universities.

He has been providing a clinical service for people with autistic spectrum disorders since 1980, when he was awarded a training fellowship from the Medical Research Council (United Kingdom) to study Asperger syndrome. He created the Sheffield Asperger Assessment Service in 1995 when he moved to Sheffield from the University of Warwick, where he had been appointed to the first chair in psychotherapy in the UK.

He has authored 70 refereed publications, 32 book chapters, 36 other publications, 7 websites, 5 videotapes, and 9 books (1 translated into Polish, Japanese, and Arabic).

He is married to Professor Emmy van Deurzen.



  • Stirling, J., White, C., Lewis, S., Hopkins, R., Tantam, D., Huddy, A. et al. (2003) "Neurocognitive function and outcome in first-episode schizophrenia: a 10-year follow-up of an epidemiological cohort", Schizophrenia Research, 65, 75-86
  • Tantam, D. (2003) "The challenge of adolescents and adults with Asperger syndrome", Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 12, 143-163
  • Tantam, D. (2003) "The flavour of emotions", Psychology and Psychotherapy, 76, 23-45
  • Tantam, D. (2004) "Ronald Fairbairn" in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Oxford
  • Tantam, D. (2005) Pathways into adult care, Psychiatry, 4 (9), 141-144
  • Tantam, D. (2006) Electronic approaches to Psychotherapy – Computers, the internet and the World Wide Web: an introduction for the e-therapist, Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 12, 359-367
  • Tantam, D. (2006) "Opportunities and risks in e-therapy", Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 12, 368-374
  • Tantam, D. (2006) "The machine as psychotherapist: impersonal communication with a machine", Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 12
  • Tantam, D. (2006) "The machine as intermediary: personal communication via a machine", Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 12
  • Tantam, D. (2006) "Results of a survey of registrants of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy", European Journal of Psychotherapy, Counselling, and Health, 8:321-342
  • Larson FV, Wagner AP, Jones PB, Tantam D, Lai MC, Baron-Cohen S, Holland AJ. (2016) "Psychosis in autism: comparison of the features of both conditions in a dually affected cohort." , The British Journal of Psychiatry : the Journal of Mental Science., PMID 27979819 DOI: 10.1192/bjp.bp.116.187682
  • Larson FV, Arrand JR, Tantam D, Jones PB, Holland AJ., (2017), "Copy number variants in people with autism spectrum disorders and co-morbid psychosis.", European Journal of Medical Genetics., PMID 29225144 DOI: 10.1016/j.ejmg.2017.12.005


  • Goldberg, D.P. & Tantam, D. (eds.) (1990) The Public Health Impact of Mental Disorder, Hogrefe and Huber, Bern, 238pp
  • Greenberg, M., Shergill, S., Szmukler, G., Tantam, D. (2002) Narratives in Psychiatry, Jessica Kingsley
  • Greenberg, M., Szmukler, G & Tantam, D. (1986) Making Sense of Psychiatric Cases, Oxford: Oxford University Press
  • Strang, J., Donmall, M., Webster, A., Abbey, J., Tantam, D. (1991) A Bridge Not Far Enough: Community Drug Teams and Doctors in the North Western Region, ISDD Research Monograph 3. London: Institute for the Study of Drug Dependence
  • Tantam, D. (1988, 1991, 2000) A Mind of One's Own; National Autistic Society: London, 35pp, 1988. Polish translation 1996 in Autistic Child 4, 1, 4-19 and 4,2, 4-13, Japanese translation, Arabic translation 2005
  • Tantam, D. and Birchwood, M. (eds. 1994) College Seminars in Psychology and Social Sciences, London: Gaskell Press
  • Tantam, D., Duncan, A. and Appleby, L. (eds. 1996) Psychiatry for the Developing World, Gaskell Press
  • Tantam, D. (ed. 1998) Clinical Topics in Psychotherapy, Gaskell Press
  • Tantam, D. (2002) Psychotherapy and Counselling in Practice, Cambridge University Press
  • Tantam, D. (2014) Emotional Well-being and Mental Health: A Guide for Counsellors & Psychotherapists, SAGE Publications Ltd


  1. ^ Cacciottolo, Mario (28 June 2007). "Mentally ill or a cold-blooded murderer?". BBC. Retrieved 27 March 2011. 
  2. ^ Digby Tantam. "Digby Tantam". New School of Psychotherapy and Counselling, Middlesex University.