David Becker is a trained psychologist and PhD.
After having worked for many years with victims of political persecution in Chile he is now based at the International Academy for Innovative Education, Psychology and Economy (INA) at the Free University of Berlin. In 2002 he was a co-founder of the Office for Psychosocial Issues (OPSI) at the International Academy (INA), through which he works as a consultant for international organizations in reference to psychosocial projects in regions of conflict and war.
He has published extensively on the issues of trauma, human rights, and dealing with the past. His most recent book was published in Germany in 2006 and is titled “Die Erfindung des Traumas – Verflochtene Geschichten” (The invention of Trauma- Entangled Histories”). Together with Barbara Weyermann he has authored the toolkit “Gender, Conflict Transformation and the Psychosocial Approach” in 2006 and has subsequently been working for SDC on the introduction and implementation of the psychosocial approach into Conflict Sensitive Programme Management (focus: Tajikistan, Grands Lacs, Nepal, Colombia).
He is furthermore engaged in institutional coaching and training in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Vive Zene/IAMANEH) and Palestine (WEP-GCMHP/CFD).
From 2008 till 2011 he lead the OPSI-team dedicated to a three-year evaluation and scientific coaching of a group of model projects operating within a program of the German Government, focusing on issues referring to Germany as an immigration country (34 projects). Since 2008 he is “Privatdozent” (German academic degree of professor) at the University of Hannover, Germany, where he teaches Social/Political Psychology.
Since 2010 he is directing the OPSI project “Kicking the Ball and Taking Care – Psychosocial Help in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank” which is financed by the humanitarian help of the Federal Foreign Office of Germany. The project combines sports activities with easy access to mental health for 800 children in UNRWA schools. Furthermore it focuses on developing structures of professional coaching and supervision between mental health professionals.
Since 2011 he is also engaged in a GIZ-financed project in the Gaza Strip focusing on the development of counseling services within UNRWA schools. Together with other colleagues in OPSI he has developed a new evaluation and self-evaluation tool entitled “Psychosocial conflict analysis” which will be published in 2012.
This post is also available in german.