|Education||Middlesex University (PhD)|
Palo Alto University
|Awards||AASECT Professional Standard of Excellence Award (2021), AASECT Book Award (2010)|
|Fields||Social psychology, sexuality and relational science|
|Institutions||Relationship Panoramic, Inc.|
|Thesis||Understanding the sexual health information needs and preferences of “hard to reach” young people (2010)|
|Doctoral advisor||Betsy Thom|
|Other academic advisors||Ray Iles|
Sara Nasserzadeh is an Iranian-American social psychologist, relationship counselor, psychosexual therapist, public speaker and author. She is known mostly for her educational programs on BBC Persian Radio and TV on human sexuality and relationships. She received the BBC’s Innovation of the Year Award in 2007 and was among the BBC Persian 100 Influential Women. Nasserzadeh received the People of Distinction Humanitarian Award in New York City in 2014. She is also a winner of AASECT Book Award and AASECT Professional Standard of Excellence Award.
Sara Nasserzadeh completed her undergraduate degree in linguistics and continued her graduate studies in London at Middlesex University, Relate Institute, Sheffield Hallam University and University of East London. In the UK, she obtained a master’s degree in social sciences research methodologies, a PhD in social psychology, a graduate certificate in couple counseling and a postgraduate diploma in psychosexual therapy. In the US, she also obtained a master’s degree in marriage and family therapy from Palo Alto University in California.
Nasserzadeh is a UK-trained social psychologist and psychosexual therapist who started her career with a focus on psychosexual dysfunctions and comprehensive sexuality education for marginalized groups. Between 2006 and 2008, BBC World Service commissioned her to produce three seasons of a radio show called the Whispers providing sex education for Persian-speaking audiences across Iran, Afghanistan and those living in diaspora. The show won a prestigious award by the BBC World Service in 2007 and was further commissioned by BBC Persian TV and aired from 2015 to 2019.
Nasserzadeh’s expertise in customer insights and ability to decode complex relationships resulted in her collaborations with the UN agencies (primarily with UNFPA), non-profit organizations, Pfizer, Stanford and professional organizations such as the American Association for Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT) and the World Association for Sexual Health (WAS).
As a public speaker and subject matter expert, Nasserzadeh has delivered hundreds of training workshop, plenary sessions, keynotes and lectures to thousands of mental health and healthcare professionals, educators, researchers, government officials and members of public on a wide range of topics such as emergent love, cultural humility and genital practices around the globe, to name a few. Nasserzadeh has developed the theoretical framework around the concept of "emergent love" as an anti-dote for love confusion at a time that current models of love seem to be inadequate or failing.
Nasserzadeh has been engaged in various leadership roles of a few professional association. In 2009, she created and continuously chaired the Middle East Sexual Health Committee of the World Association for Sexual Health (WAS) and held other offices such as Acting Vice President, Associate Secretary for North America, and member of the International Scientific Committee. At AASECT, Nasserzadeh chaired the Awards Committee, the Communications Steering Committee, and the International Outreach Committee for various terms. She is currently the chair of the board of Diversity and Social Justice at California Psychological Association.
In 2013, Nasserzadeh started the World Sexual Health Day events (North America chapter) in New York, which was later transferred to Stanford University. In 2019, she co-founded a California Benefit Corporation called Relationship Panoramic and co-created and scientifically validated an inventory to holistically assess dyadic relationships. She is currently based in West Los Angeles and works/travels globally.