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Nepal earthquake: "significant expenditures need to take into account existing cultural priorities and dynamics"

To speak with Professor Goodwin please contact Tom Frew, International Press Officer - a.t.frew@warwick.ac.uk +44 (0)7785 433 155

Professor Robin Goodwin, of the University of Warwick's Department of Psychology, has provided an expert comment on the challenges now facing the Nepalese people following the recent earthquake.

An expert in the impact of large-scale societal transitions and threats on our relationships with others and our everyday psychological processes, Professor Goodwin argued that "any aid needs to be more than short-term and that while communities may ‘pull together’ shortly after a tragedy such as this such community spirit is often short lived as a result of continuing strains, unmet expectations and arguments around resource distribution".

Professor Goodwin's comment, in full:

“My heartful commiserations to all that have been affected by the terrible events in Nepal in the last days and those continuing to face adversity and uncertainties as the country comes to terms with the earthquake. From a psychological perspective we know that these events present considerable challenges to all those involved, and although stress response may vary significantly across individuals and communities those already facing poorer resources, less finances and adequate housing etc are likely to struggle the most.

"Probably the most important message is that any aid needs to be more than short-term and that while communities may ‘pull together’ shortly after a tragedy such as this such community spirit is often short lived as a result of continuing strains, unmet expectations and arguments around resource distribution, rebuilding priorities etc. This means that interventions need to be committed and that significant expenditures need to take into account existing cultural priorities and dynamics”.