The practice of Mindfulness is rooted in the wisdom traditions and has been practised for thousands of years. In the last decade or so, there has been unprecedented growth in the popularity of teaching and practising mindfulness in education; as part of therapy in psychology; and in enhancing leadership, employee wellness, and relationships in business and health care.
Along with the cultural popularity of mindfulness, research studies have also consistently increased in number every year. With current technologies, researchers are able to look at how the brain responds to the practice of mindfulness; how an individual's relationships change through the practice of mindfulness, and the resulting benefits on an individual's mental and physical health. Mindfulness studies consistently show improved focus and attention, and increased resilience and emotional intelligence in both adults and children.
The following organizations and universities conduct research and post links to reports and studies in mindfulness research:
The Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School
"Mindfulness is an active area of scientific research with new studies on MBSR [Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction] being shared on a regular basis."
American Mindfulness Research Association
The association adds links to new research papers as soon as they are published. AMRA also conducts research projects and studies of the brain changes during mindfulness practice:
UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center
The Center, at the University of California, Los Angeles, provides this report as a PDF document: "Brief Summary of Mindfulness Research" by Greg Flaxman and Lisa Flook, Ph.D.
Studies at Harvard and a Cambridge TEDx talk
The Harvard article is titled: "Where Can I Find Evidence-Based Mindfulness Research?" The Harvard research site includes a link to the TEDxCambridge (2012) talk by Dr. Sara Lazar of Harvard Medical School describing her research on meditation and increased cortical thickness.
American Psychological Association
The Continuing Education Department at the APA offers a credit course on mindfulness research and its applications for mental health. "This article provides an overview of the research on mindfulness and discusses its implications for practice, research and training."