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How Can Psychology Inform Disaster Management

Friday 24th March 2017 at BPS Offices, Tabernacle Street, London

In recent years, there have been many natural and man-made disaster affecting the UK. In this symposium, we will be looking at how a greater understanding of how a psychological awareness can help to reduce the number and magnitude of crises and may prevent these events becoming disasters.

The symposium brings together psychologists, emergency responders and planners to illustrate how psychological factors can inform disaster preparedness and management. The day will illustrate the principals involved in Disaster Management by focussing on two types of disaster, Air Crashes and Flooding. However, the principles described will also apply to other crisis and disaster situations.

The day has been designed to provide opportunities for the participants to engage with the topic and to grapple with the issues involved in preparing for and managing a disaster.

Who is the day intended for?
The symposia will be of particular interest to practitioners involved in preparing for and managing major crisis and disasters responses. For psychologists, this is an opportunity to gain an understanding of the issues involved in dealing with disasters from a clinical, counselling, social, educational, forensic and occupational perspective.

What will be happening?
The day is being opened by Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes (BPS Vice Chair) and chaired by Sarita Robinson and Annette Greenwood. The list of other speakers can be found below.

Learning outcomes and objectives if available: By the end of the symposia the attendees will be able to:-

1. Identify the main features of crisis and disaster management
2. Recognise the importance of preparation
3. Distinguish between the different roles required in a disaster management team
4. Understand the needs of victims

Presentation Downloads

Presentations are available for download here if we have permission to share them.

Evidence for Action in Emergencies and Disasters – Dr Richard Amlot

Reducing Air Crashes – Peter McCarthy

Shoreham Air Crash – Family Liaison and Support – Louise Pye

Recognising the Consequences – Bryan Carrington

The psychological impact of floods – Dr James Rubin

Dealing with the Flooding in Cumbria – Chief Superintendent Andy Towler

Evaluation of Emergency Responses– Professor David Alexander

Review of the Day – Dr Noreen Tehrani

Registration fees can be found on the booking form. If you have any queries please contact us via the event hotline on 01332 224500


Friday 24th March 2017

A detailed agenda can be downloaded below.

09:30Introduction to the Day – Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes
09:45Evidence for Action in Emergencies and Disasters – Dr Richard Amlot
10:15Reducing Air Crashes – Peter McCarthy
10:45Refreshment Break
11:00Shoreham Air Crash – Family Liaison and Support – Louise Pye
11:30The Psychology of Preparedness – Dr Sarita Robinson
12:00Recognising the Consequences – Bryan Carrington
12:30Lunch and Student Presentations
14:00The Psychological Impact of Floods – Dr James Rubin
14:30Dealing with the Flooding in Cumbria – Chief Superintendent Andy Towler
15:00Refreshment Break
15:15Evaluation of Emergency Responses – Professor David Alexander
16:45Review of the Day – Dr Noreen Tehrani
17:15Closing Thoughts – Professor William Yule

Speakers and Facilitators

Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes

Clinical Psychologist, CBT Therapist and EMDR Consultant, Former Head of MoD Clinical Psychology and Founder Director of the Veterans and Families Institute, Anglia Ruskin University

Dr Richard Amlot

The Scientific Programme Leader of the Behavioural Science Team based in the Emergency Response Department at Public Health England

Peter McCarthy

A lecturer and researcher at Cranfield University with an interest in the Human Factors involved in Air Accident Investigation

Louise Pye

Family Liaison Co-ordinator, who dealt with the Shoreham Air Crash for Sussex Police

Dr Sarita Robinson

Senior Lecturer UCLan with an interest in the human responses to disaster situations. She has recently reviewed helicopter evacuation training for the MOD

Bryan Carrington

Training consultant and a former trainer for Rolls-Royce, with the responsibility for product safety training.

Dr James Rubin

Senior Lecturer in the Psychology of Emerging Health Risks, King’s College London. Undertaken research into several flooding incidents in England

Andy Towler

Chief Superintendent, Cumbria Police, responsible for dealing with the Flooding in Cumbria

Professor David Alexander

David Alexander researches all aspects of disaster risk, impact and response. He has conducted research on methods of disaster response planning

Dr Noreen Tehrani

Noreen has worked with emergency services dealing with major disasters and has developed organisational models of trauma preparedness and response

Professor William Yule

Emeritus Professor of Applied Child Psychology; Past Chair of BPsS Crisis, Disaster and Trauma Psychology Section; Founder member of Children and War Foundation


BPS Offices, Tabernacle Street, London

The British Psychological Society, 30 Tabernacle Street, London, EC2A 4UE

Additional Information

Click here to download further information.

PDFHow Can Psychology Inform Disaster Management Agenda
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