ICCA2018 panel on interactions with people in crisis

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Type Conference
Categoryies (tags) Uncategorized
Dates 2018/07/11 - 2018/07/15
Link http://icca2018.org
Address Loughborough University, UK
Geolocation 52° 46' 9", -1° 13' 29"
Abstract due 2017/09/08
Submission deadline 2017/09/30
Final version due
Notification date
Tweet CFP: ICCA 2018 panel on interactions with people in crisis, DL: 8th Sept to organizers, 30th Sept abstract due
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CFP: ICCA2018 panel on interactions with people in crisis:


Dear All,

Heidi Kevoe-Feldman and I are organising a panel on Interactions with people in crisis for the ICCA conference, to be held in Loughborough 11-15 July, 2018. Please find the panel abstract below. If you’re interested in contributing please get in touch with us by 8th September latest.

Interactions with people in crisis

This panel brings together current research on interactions with people in crisis, focussing on institutional services that routinely deal with crisis/emergency interventions, such as people’s suicidal behaviours, drug overdoses, and domestic abuse. Relevant services include helplines, emergency services (911 calls), (crisis) counselling services and the police. When dealing with a person in crisis, institutional members may be faced with interactional challenges. This panel focusses on the methods service providers use to meet such challenges and provide help.

Previous conversation analytic studies have explored the social organisation of features associated with a current crisis, such as hysteria in emergency telephone calls (Whalen & Zimmerman 1998), and in interactions between the police and members of the public (Kidwell 2006). These studies show the implications that distress might have for dealing with institutional matters: while expressions of distress project urgency or desperation, and a person’s entitlement to be distressed, they also have the potential to cause problems for the encounter itself (Whalen & Zimmerman 1998). One common finding is that emotional distress halts the progressivity of the interaction, and affects the way in which institutional members manage urgency. For example, in a study of child protection helplines, Hepburn & Potter (2007) showed how emotional distress gets treated as accidental to the institutional matters at hand, such that the recipient may license a delay in progressivity, thereby not treating institutional matters as urgent.

In addition to emotional distress, the interactional challenges relevant to a crisis/emergency response might include a person’s resistance, hostility and non-responsiveness (Morabito et al. 2012), which could be expressed through disaffiliation, noncompliance, or disengagement. We invite analytic enquiries into how service providers meet such ‘interactional asynchronies’ (Jefferson & Lee 1981). These enquiries may include, but are not restricted to, reassurances, challenges, (dis)affiliation, requests, directives, proposals, or (other) formulations of advice. With this panel we wish to contribute towards an empirically based understanding of crisis response and intervention in different services. We invite research on a range of different data, both telephone and face-to-face/video. The contributions can focus on current (crisis) emergencies, but also crisis-associated behaviour that is more long term, but which is currently being dealt with by a response unit (e.g. helplines, counselling, the police).


  • Hepburn, Alexa, and Jonathan Potter. "Crying receipts: Time, empathy, and institutional practice." Research on Language and Social Interaction 40.1 (2007): 89-116.
  • Jefferson, Gail, and John RE Lee. "The rejection of advice: Managing the problematic convergence of a ‘troubles-telling’and a ‘service encounter’." Journal of pragmatics 5.5 (1981): 399-422.
  • Kidwell, Mardi. "‘Calm down!’: the role of gaze in the interactional management of hysteria by the police." Discourse Studies 8.6 (2006): 745-770.
  • Morabito, Melissa S., et al. "Crisis intervention teams and people with mental illness: Exploring the factors that influence the use of force." Crime & delinquency 58.1 (2012): 57-77.
  • Whalen, Jack, and Don H. Zimmerman. "Observations on the display and management of emotion in naturally occurring activities: The case of" hysteria" in calls to 9-1-1." Social psychology quarterly (1998): 141-159.


Rein Ove Sikveland Research Associate Dept. of Social Sciences Loughborough University +44(0)1509222848 Webpage www.carmtraining.org