I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Akihiko Masuda about his work with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness, and the “Third Wave” of cognitive-behavioral therapy. I enjoyed learning about how Dr. Masuda was inspired by his grandfather, a Zen Buddhist master in his hometown near Nagano, Japan. Clearly, Western concepts and systems of psychology have greatly benefited from philosophical approaches that are rooted in many non-Western traditions. Dr. Masuda talked about integral concepts in ACT and how people can benefit from them therapeutically.
Dr. Akihiko Masuda is an associate professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Previously, he was on faculty at Georgia State University from 2007. Dr. Masuda was born and raised in Nagano, Japan, and moved to the United States in 1993 when he was 18. He earned his Bachelors Degree in Psychology at West Virginia University. He earned his Master’s Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis at University of the Pacific in 2000, and his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at University of Nevada, Reno in 2006. His professional areas of interest are broad, and include Acceptance and Mindfulness-based behavioral therapies, diversity and multicultural competency, Zen Buddhism, and human struggles-and-happiness. He is the author of more than 110 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters. His recent works include Mindfulness and Acceptance in Multicultural Competency, and Handbook of Zen, Mindfulness and Behavioral Health.