Special Plenary Session at Interspill 2022

Dr Sabrina Cohen-Hatton is one of the few women to have served at the top of the fire service. She combines her role as one of the most senior female firefighters in the UK with work as a Research Fellow at Cardiff University where she specialises in behavioural neuroscience, in particular how humans make decisions under pressure. She is also the author of The Heat of The Moment – A Firefighter’s Stories of Life and Death Decisions.

Showing resilience and determination from a young age, Sabrina was homeless on the streets of South Wales when she was 15. After two years on the streets selling The Big Issue, she was able to secure accommodation and at 18 joined the fire service. Whilst working as a firefighter she also studied at the Open University and then at Cardiff University, completing her PhD in Psychology. In the fire service, Sabrina became one of its highest-ranking women officers. She climbed the ranks serving in some of the largest fire brigades in the country, whilst maintaining her academic work with Cardiff University. Her subsequent research into high-pressure decision making in the emergency services has not only won awards but has also influenced policy at a global level.

In her best-selling book The Heat of The Moment, Sabrina recounts both her early formative experiences, as well as life on the frontline and the extraordinary insights it has brought. From judging when and how to evacuate a building to which of her colleagues should be sent into a blaze, she takes an honest, human look at the highs and lows of one of the riskiest and most challenging of occupations. And whilst many of these stories seem unique to fire and rescue work, her insights and lessons apply to everyone, in life and in business.

She has been invited to present a talk on her research and its relevance to decision making under pressure at Interspill 2022 in a Special Plenary Session at 0930 22 June in the Auditorium Theatre in Hall 10 Amsterdam RAI.

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