It was with sadness We have received the sad news that our wise and friendly colleague Professor Björn Helge Johnsen has fallen asleep at Haukeland Hospital on Thursday 9 November. He was only 64 years old. It leaves a void with us. We have lost a dear colleague, an innovative researcher, a mentor, a manager, and a supervisor.
Bjorn Helge finished He was educated in psychology at the University of Bergen in 1987 and defended his PhD in psychology in 1993 with his thesis “Brain asymmetry and emotional facial expressions: conditioning experiments” with Professor Kenneth Hogdahl as supervisor.
After research training He was appointed permanently to the Department of Biological and Medical Psychology (then the Department of Somatic Personality Psychology), then the Department of Clinical Psychology before taking up the position of Professor of Personality Psychology in 2001 in the Department of Social Psychology, Vocational Institute. Course in psychology. Here, Björn Helge took an active role and as of August 2022 became Head of the Center for Crisis Psychology at the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Bergen. He held several important positions, including Vice Dean of the College in the period 1996-1999.
It was Bjorn Helge A driving force in building the field of operational psychology. Operational psychology deals with psychological processes in situations requiring quick decisions and where the decisions have serious consequences – with great importance for professional groups such as police, health workers, firefighters and the armed forces. He published several important textbooks in this area of research and practice. He initiated and led many large research projects at the College and served as a midwife during the careers of many young researchers.
establish Not least are research projects in this area in collaboration with vulnerable professional groups, and research that has provided unique insights into psychological mechanisms in risky situations, and how best to facilitate good decision-making and follow-up afterwards.
Already in 1996 He received the Meltzer Young Researcher Prize, while in 2002 he received the Bjørn Christiansen Memorial Prize – awarded by the Norwegian Psychological Society.
His research experience His interpersonal skills make him a highly sought-after employee and expert in Norway and abroad. He was also an internationally recognized expert on major incidents – and was, among other things, part of the international team that assisted individuals during identification work in Thailand in the days and weeks following the 2004 tsunami. He developed crisis management procedures and assisted with clinical management To follow up employees in a long series of crises. Björn Helge’s primary interest was to take measures in the full range from prevention to treatment and return to working life for people in serious crises.
next to Through his extensive work at the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Bergen, Bjørn Helge was also serving in the Norwegian Armed Forces from 1991 to 2019. This included, among others, clinical positions (as a senior psychologist in the Norwegian Navy) and a scientific position as a second lecturer At the Naval Academy.
In 2019, it was He received the Navy Meritorious Service Medal. Research projects and practical experience from here have continuously benefited students in professional study in psychology, not least all the groups who received lectures and tours at the Haakonsvren base with a focus on crisis management, treatment of staff and communication with relatives. He was in great demand as a supervisor at all educational levels at the University of Bergen.
It was Bjorn Helge A creative person with great work ability. In his daily work, he was a good conversation partner and participant in meetings. We are grateful for the way he made his colleagues feel happy, and the way he created cohesion in the workplace, preferably over a cup of coffee and a good story.
At the Center for Crisis Psychology Björn Helge has contributed significantly to the development of the Center into a professional, globally oriented environment with a high level of expertise in psychological processes related to experiencing and dealing with crises, and providing training and assistance to helpers in crisis situations. To the Center, he was a highly valued leader, creating an inspiring and inspiring community and work environment.
We are many Who will personally miss his kindness, sense of humor and wisdom. We remember him with gratitude. Our thoughts go out to his wife Elinor, their two children and the rest of the family.
On behalf of colleagues and friends at the Center for Crisis Psychology, Department of Social Psychology and other Faculty of Psychology, University of Bergen, Unne Hilten, Torbjørn Torsheim and Norman Andersen
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