Topic Cloud


PSYDRR engages in research projects that support the theme of disaster risk reduction.  Our current efforts focus on emergency notifications and symbology. In addition, we develop tools and methodologies for supporting this work.


PSYDRR is undertaking research in several areas.

Emergency Notifications

An ongoing project at Rider University in collaboration with researchers at the University of Jyväskylä in Finland is examining the use of emergency notification systems.  Our initial findings have been presented at conferences such as ISCRAM, the Mobile Response Workshop in  2008 and others.  This research is continuing and a new survey is underway.

Signs and Symbols for Wayfinding and Shelter

An ongoing project that is examining salient visual features that can improve the detection of wayfinding and shelter signs. An initial paper was presented at IDRC 2007 in Harbin and interim results have been presented by student Dana Piechocinski at Rider University.

Cognitive Science Net Lab

The World Wide Web offers great opportunities for international collaboration and research. The founding members of PSYDRR see the Web as a powerful tool for conducting research in support of disaster risk reduction.

In conjunction with STARI at Rider University (USA), PSYDRR hosts the Cognitive Science Net Lab (CSNL), a Web-based virtual laboratory to support research in a variety of areas related to disaster risk reduction, and to introduce students in the Psychology program at Rider University to on-line experimentation.

Examples of studies conducted via CSNL include examination of salient features of warning signage, identification of wayfinding symbols in cluttered visual fields, usability of campus emergency notification systems, and examination of multimodality warning signals.

You can visit the Cognitive Science Net Lab at

If you are interested in learning more, or are interested in collaboration, or in supporting research on PSYDRR, please contact Dr. Helen Sullivan – hsullivanphd (at)

Current CSNL Capabilities

CSNL uses both open source and custom built applications tailored to Web- and mobile device-based experiments and data collection.   Examples of these applications include surveys and multimodal stimulus presentation.  Experimental apps have been developed for both Apple’s iPhone and iPad, as well as Google Android.