Centre for Crisis Psychology

Psychosocial responses to pandemic/natural disasters/climate change

The number of people affected by natural disasters each year are alarmingly high and can be expected to rise. The COVID-19 pandemic threatens the whole world. The mental health consequences have been documented not only in rates of posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) and PTSD, but also for depression and other mental health problems.

Storm at Alnes
Storm at Alnes
Børge Sandnes, colourbox.com

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In Nordic countries where we live in modern welfare states, inhabitants have high expectations of being cared for, both in terms of medical and psychosocial assistance in times of crisis. Systems must be in place to provide help for affected groups to prevent them from undue suffering. This conference will discuss the challenges involved and outline how communities and states can respond and provide appropriate psychosocial help to its citizens.

The presenters at the conference have been involved in research and clinical work following various disasters in their respective countries and internationally. This conference is open to everyone who takes an interest in how we respond to the public’s psychosocial needs following disasters and climate change.

Among presenters will be:

Professor Atle Dyregrov, Center for Crisis Psychology, University of Bergen
Professor Jarle Eid, Center for Crisis Psychology, University of Bergen
Professor Arna Hauksdottir, University of Iceland
Professor Unnur Anna Valdimarsdóttir, University of Iceland

The conference is a collaboration between Centre for Crisis Psychology, University of Bergen, University of Iceland and NORDRESS

The conference will be held on November 17th.


Day 1: Open conference on psychosocial issues following natural disasters/climate change

Open for students from all professions, professionals, media, and the public

Invited presentations on the following topics:

Before lunch

  • Health and psychosocial consequences of pandemics and natural disasters in the Nordic countries
  • How are helpers affected and supported during and following pandemics and natural disasters?
  • How can cities and communities be psychologically prepared for disasters such as pandemics, extreme weather and climate change?

After lunch

  • The fear of climate change and pandemics in children. A public health issue?
  • How can parents and teachers meet children’s concerns?
  • Interventions for children and families


  • A panel of adolescents and professionals discuss psychosocial issues related to pandemics and natural disasters including climate change

The conference is in English