Efsevia Koutantou

Assistant Lecturer
Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies
Assistant Lecturer (Blended Learning)
Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies
Postgraduate Research Student
Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies
 Efsevia Koutantou


Ask me about
  • Subjectivity research
  • Narrative Research in Psychosocial Studies
  • Youth and Crisis
  • Psychosocial Approaches to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Psychosocial Research with populations in socio-economic and health crises
  • Group Analysis and Family Therapy
  • Psychoanalysis and Theatre Practice


Efsevia is a fully funded PhD researcher in the Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies, University of Essex and a Trainee in Group Analysis and Family Psychotherapy at the Hellenic Organisation of Psychotherapy and Education in Group Analysis HOPEinGA in Athens, Greece. She holds a BSc and MSc in Sociology from the University of Crete, a Trust Certificate in Introduction to Counseling and Psychotherapy from the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust in London and a diploma in Acting from a conservatory in Greece with involvement in many acting projects and seminars. Her doctoral thesis investigates familial influences in forming young people's subjectivity in Greece and how they can engage in (re)inventing themselves during the Greek austerity crisis. Family is examined both as a lived experience and as a signifier. The Greek financial crisis of 2009 has shifted traditional family dynamics and might have impacted on subjectivity, especially in young adults. The research question of this study is: "How do young Greek adults articulate their subjectivity in relation to the desire of the (m)Other in the aftermath of the Greek economic crisis? Unstructured interviews were used to explore experiences related to growing up in Greek families in the aftermath of the financial crisis in 20 participants between 25 and 35 years old. Attention was also paid to how they respond to the impact of the crisis and the extent to which their future expectations about family and society have changed. The Free Association Narrative Interview (FANI) method was used, which starts from one very broad question that gives free rein to the narrative. In the second, more interactive part of the interview, open questions were asked to invite participants to develop specific stories, feelings and ideas. The results point towards a strong identification with the (m)Other, as well as an identification with specific socio-political discourses and ideologies about the family and the Greek nation. Strong discourses and phantasies about family have been present in Greece traditionally, but the financial crisis seems to have exacerbated the possibility for young adults to move towards separation and individuation from the (m)Other. Social change could emerge through a shift in both the symbolic and the libidinal character of identifications, in terms of affect and jouissance. Otherwise, the repetition of social acts will continue to reproduce structures of subordination and obedience. Besides her PhD research, Efsevia is working on the following independent projects: 1) A Psychosocial Approach to the COVID-19 pandemic" co-authoring with Dr. Athanasia Chalari. This will be published as a book by a UK publisher. 2) Greeks in the UK: Life in Great Britain, with Dr. Athanasia Chalari, exploring subjective experiences from Greeks in the UK concerning issues that relate to their life in Great Britain and austerity crisis in Greece. Also, she is delivering seminars across a number of modules at both the Sociology and the Psychosocial/ Psychoanalytic Studies Department, as a Graduate Teaching Assistant. She has been awarded the status of Associate Fellow in Higher Education (AFHEA) Teaching responsibilities: Psychosocial/ Psychoanalytic Department: - Trauma and Recovery: A Psychodynamic Approach - Introduction to Childhood Studies - Popular Film, Literature and Television: A Psychoanalytic Approach Sociology Department: - Researching Social Life (Qualitative Methodology) Published research articles: Chalari, Athanasia and Koutantou Efi Eirini. October 2020. "Narratives of Leaving and Returning to Homeland: the example of Greek Brain Drainers living in UK" in Sociological Research Online. Chalari, Athanasia & Koutantou, Efi Eirini. March 2020. Greek Brain Drainers in the UK: The deeper causes of this flight beyond the Greek crisis in Koinoniologiki Epitheorisi (in Greek), V. 7 Koutantou, E. 2017. Young peoples constraints in contemporary Greece: the self in crisis in Crossing Conceptual Boundaries IX, PhD Annual Yearbook New Series, Social Sciences, UEL, UK. Conference Presentations: Greek Brain drainers in the UK: the deeper causes of this flight apart from the Greek crisis in the 7th Conference of the Greek Sociological Society: Societies after the crisis, societies without crisis in Athens, Greece 23 25 September 2020 (online zoom conference). Subjectivity in the making: A Psychosocial exploration of the influences of familial relationships in young people in Greece during the crisis, at the PPS Conference The Unconscious and Everyday Life, University of Essex, Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies Department, 30-31 May 2019. Funded by University of Essex. 'Religions' as haunting ideologies - transforming potential in 'possessed' subjects, at the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society (APCS) 2018 Annual Conference: Transformations: Disrupting Dystopian Futures, at the Rutgers University In and Conference center, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA, 20 October 2018. Proficio Funding from the University of Essex, Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies Department Sublimation of emotion into logic on the stage at the International Conference: Labans Philosophy ant Theatre Practice, Athens, 16-18 July 2018. Research Funding from the University of Essex Loss and Trauma during the Greek crisis: A Collapse of an ideal? at the Psychoanalysis and Politics Conference Series. Conference Subject: Psychodynamics in Times of Austerity in the Portuguesa Sociedade de Psicanalise, 18-20th May 2018, Lisbon, Portugal. Research fund from the University of Essex. Research Forum Presentations, University of Essex, Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies, February 2018. Greece: the self in transition or maybe not? at the 8th Biennial HO PhD Symposium on Contemporary Greece and Cyprus, 1st July 2017, London School of Economics and Political Science (presentation will be published on the Hellenic Observatory website). Travel grant from LSE. Psychosocial Dimensions of Identity and Subjectivity in Greek young adults: what place does family have? at the 2nd Annual Conference of the Association for Psychosocial Studies at the University of West England, 29th June 1st July 2016


  • BSc in Sociology University of Crete, Greece (2004)

  • Msc Sociology: Social Organisation and Social Change University of Crete, Greece (2010)

  • Trust Certificate: Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK (2017)

Research and professional activities


Young people, subjectivity and the desire of the Other during the Greek economic crisis

Supervisor: Prof. Jochem Willemsen , Dr. Isabel Crowhurst

Research interests

Subjectivity Research

Narrative Research in Psychosocial Studies

Youth and Crisis

Lacanian psychoanalysis

Group Analysis and Family Therapy



Colchester Campus