Date

2019-03-22

Document Type

Poster

Description

Many community-engaged research studies in health and allied health conclude that challenges to individual and public health are mediated by trauma in any of its forms. Researchers who investigate such challenges - e.g., interpersonal violence, sexual abuses and assaults, addictions - may well acquire a traumagenic burden from their research partners, subjects and/or the community milieux in which they conduct their studies, resulting in acute trauma and/or vicarious traumatization (VT). This poster summarizes the content and interactions of a recent workshop on researcher trauma that explored psychodynamics of VT in a translational approach that shows: 1) implications for principal investigators and research staff; 2) education they need about researcher-respondent trauma transmission; and 3) supports that can help to mitigate researcher trauma. We present an interdisciplinary theoretical model to consider how burdens of VT can impact researchers' work, health, and personal lives. How do researchers perceive their work and provisions of care and healing? What are their experiences of the work, and the harm it may promulgate? While VT has been most thoroughly studied amongst psychotherapists who provide individual treatment, a few studies show that VT symptoms and chronicity appear to be quite similar amongst others who work in trauma-saturated environments. Indeed, this workshop advanced our understanding of this and other forms of secondary trauma, and signposted important lessons for the education and practice of researchers engaged, and immersed, in community-engaged health and allied health studies, broadly defined.

Keywords

trauma, researcher trauma, interpersonal violence, sexual abuse and assault, addiction, traumagenic burden

DOI

10.13028/ht79-v619

Rights and Permissions

Copyright the Author(s)

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.

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Mar 22nd, 12:00 PM

Researcher Trauma in Dangerous Places: Navigating Peril in Physical and Psychological Milieux

Many community-engaged research studies in health and allied health conclude that challenges to individual and public health are mediated by trauma in any of its forms. Researchers who investigate such challenges - e.g., interpersonal violence, sexual abuses and assaults, addictions - may well acquire a traumagenic burden from their research partners, subjects and/or the community milieux in which they conduct their studies, resulting in acute trauma and/or vicarious traumatization (VT). This poster summarizes the content and interactions of a recent workshop on researcher trauma that explored psychodynamics of VT in a translational approach that shows: 1) implications for principal investigators and research staff; 2) education they need about researcher-respondent trauma transmission; and 3) supports that can help to mitigate researcher trauma. We present an interdisciplinary theoretical model to consider how burdens of VT can impact researchers' work, health, and personal lives. How do researchers perceive their work and provisions of care and healing? What are their experiences of the work, and the harm it may promulgate? While VT has been most thoroughly studied amongst psychotherapists who provide individual treatment, a few studies show that VT symptoms and chronicity appear to be quite similar amongst others who work in trauma-saturated environments. Indeed, this workshop advanced our understanding of this and other forms of secondary trauma, and signposted important lessons for the education and practice of researchers engaged, and immersed, in community-engaged health and allied health studies, broadly defined.

 

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