J. Brian Houston

J. Brian Houston
University of Missouri | Mizzou · Department of Communication

PhD

About

85
Publications
70,204
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
2,546
Citations
Citations since 2016
38 Research Items
2242 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
Introduction
J. Brian Houston, PhD, is Professor and Chair in the Department of Communication at the University of Missouri and is Director for the Disaster and Community Crisis Center (DCC) at the University of Missouri. He is Core Faculty in the University of Missouri Master of Public Health Program. Houston's research focuses on communication at all phases of disasters and on the mental health effects and political consequences of community crises.

Publications

Publications (85)
Article
Prior research has found that the prevalence and severity of intimate partner violence (IPV) increase in communities experiencing a disaster. Less studied are the associations between IPV, disaster exposure, and mental health outcomes following disaster events. In the current study, authors examined the prevalence of IPV before and after Hurricane...
Article
This study examined posttraumatic stress symptoms in a sample of U.S. adults (N = 1015) to examine the mental health impact of the Pulse Nightclub shooting media exposure. Direct and indirect relationships between LGBTQ identify, media use, emotions to media, and posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTS) related to the Pulse Nightclub shooting were exami...
Article
Full-text available
Prior research has found that exposure to natural hazards and infectious disease are associated with adverse mental health outcomes. Less studied are the ways that individual-level and community-level resilience can protect against problematic mental health outcomes following exposure to successive disaster events. In the current study, we examine...
Article
Objective: Although research indicates that women are more likely than men to report posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms following exposure to a disaster event, few studies have assessed whether these gender differences are due to bias in PTSD measures. Using item response theory, we conducted a differential item functioning (DIF) analysi...
Article
This study investigated the effects of two types of perceived online social support (i.e., informational support and emotional support) on Parkinson’s disease patients’ psychological quality of life. Also, this study examined the mediating effects of uncertainty between perceived informational support and psychological quality life, and the mediati...
Preprint
Full-text available
Today's business leaders face an unprecedented challenge of engaging and retaining young workers. We examined two facets of workplace respect to determine how leaders might combat this issue. A model was tested to examine the relationship of respectful engagement, autonomous respect, and occupational resilience on job outcomes. A survey of 1,036 U....
Article
The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) has affected 55 million people and caused more than 1,333,742 deaths globally in eight months since its first outbreak. People are increasingly engaging with information using interpersonal communication, traditional and social media to understand the novel virus. The deluge of information can be detrimental...
Article
Full-text available
Information and communication resources are needed for individuals to cope with a public health emergency like the COVID-19 pandemic. These resources include interpersonal, organizational, and mediated communication, which collectively constitute a communication ecology. This interdisciplinary special issue of American Behavioral Scientist focuses...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 outbreak began in December 2019 and soon became a global pandemic, resulting in major public health consequences for countries across the world. As the COVID-19 outbreak evolved, individuals were challenged to understand the risk of COVID-19 and to identify ways to stay safe. This understanding was accomplished through COVID-19 communi...
Article
This study examined how socio-cultural factors explain the relationship between hurricane exposure and frequency of individual disaster communication among Latinx individuals in Texas communities impacted by Hurricane Harvey. Participants included 397 Latinx residents in nine Texas counties that were most impacted by Hurricane Harvey. Through struc...
Article
Prior research has found that infectious disease outbreaks such as that of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) are associated with adverse mental health, especially among individuals with more exposure to COVID-19. Less studied are the possible relationships of media use and interpersonal communication as they relate to COVID-19 exposure and mental...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: A significant body of research has examined the psychological harm of exposure to collective traumas such as disasters (e.g., tornados, hurricanes, mass violence). Less well studied are the mental health effects of exposure to macro-level race-related traumas, such as instances of police violence toward African Americans and subsequent c...
Article
In response to the growing threat of disasters in the U.S. and worldwide, well‐tested assessment tools that operationalize specific protective factors associated with adaptation and resilience to disaster events are needed. Recognizing this need, we developed and validated the Disaster Adaptation and Resilience Scale (DARS) to measure five domains...
Article
In 2015, Nepal was hit by a series of powerful earthquakes. More than a million Nepalis currently live outside of their home country while maintaining deep social and economic ties. When Nepal was hit by the disastrous earthquakes, the traditional channels of communication were disrupted affecting the immigrants' ability to check on their friends a...
Article
Full-text available
Addressing mental and behavioral health effects of disaster media coverage is an important part of a disaster public health response, and school staff may be particularly well suited to help children and youth cope with disaster media. We conducted qualitative interviews (N = 42) to explore US school staff (e.g., teachers, mental health staff, admi...
Article
Full-text available
Natural and human‐caused disasters pose a significant risk to the health and well‐being of people. Journalists and news organisations can fulfil multiple roles related to disasters, ranging from providing warnings, assessing disaster mitigation and preparedness, and reporting on what occurs, to aiding long‐term recovery and fostering disaster resil...
Article
Disaster survivors may experience a range of mental health reactions that can include posttraumatic stress (PTS) and posttraumatic growth (PTG). The current study examines the associations between citizen disaster communication, PTS, and PTG among individuals in North Carolina communities impacted by Hurricane Matthew, approximately six weeks follo...
Article
Disasters occur at the intersections of social, natural, and built environments, and robust understanding of these interactions can only occur through insight generated from different disciplines. Yet, there are cultural, epistemological, and methodological differences across the many disciplines concerned with hazards and disasters that can make c...
Article
Full-text available
The Citizen Disaster Communication Assessment (CDCA) measures individual disaster communication activities that are intended to help communities cope across all phases of a disaster. Using the CDCA, this study examined associations among citizen disaster communication, neighborhood belonging, and community resilience using three different samples r...
Article
Hazard and disaster research requires a willingness to step outside of traditional disciplinary ontological and epistemological assumptions to both accommodate and integrate different perspectives. Moreover, the complex qualities of hazards and disasters necessitate interdisciplinary approaches to inform theory development that encompasses environm...
Article
Full-text available
Natural and human-caused disasters receive extensive media coverage that often includes images, video, and descriptions of death, injury, and destruction. Individual exposure to disaster media has been found to be associated with a variety of effects (e.g., mental health reactions) among children and adults in numerous studies. Despite evidence of...
Article
Full-text available
Using an experiment and probability sample of Chicago and Los Angeles adults (N = 1211), this study tested how tweet characteristics (tone, space) and participant age (younger, middle, older) affected attitudes about tweets from a local newspaper. Results indicate that non-opinionated tweets were perceived as more useful and credible than opinionat...
Poster
Background: Major disasters (e.g. tornados, earthquakes, hurricanes, oil spills) are considered traumatic events that usually occur suddenly and cause extensive damage to large numbers of people. While research on the prevalence and correlates of posttraumatic stress reactions (PTS) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in the aftermath of a dis...
Poster
Background: On the afternoon of May 22, 2011, an EF-5 tornado struck the city of Joplin, Missouri, killing 158 people, injuring approximately 1,150 individuals, and causing approximately $2.8 billion in economic losses. Disasters such as severe tornados, typically occur with little warning and cause extensive damage and harm. Survivors often experi...
Article
Full-text available
In 2011 a major tornado struck Joplin, Missouri, killing 158 and injuring 1,150 individuals. Approximately 2.5 years after this disaster, an online survey of Joplin adult residents (N= 438) was conducted to examine the relationship between disaster experience, posttraumatic stress (PTS) symptoms, communication with family, friends, and neighbors, a...
Article
Disasters, both natural and human-caused, can generate significant stressors for individuals, families, and communities, and research has documented an increase in the prevalence and severity of violence against women following these events. The following article reviews research documenting the prevalence and severity of violence against women in...
Article
Current U.S. federal disaster management approaches advocate for citizens to engage in local efforts to cope with the negative consequences of disasters. In line with this approach, this project develops and validates the Citizen Disaster Communication Assessment (CDCA), which is a comprehensive survey instrument measuring individuals’ communicatio...
Article
Full-text available
Many colleges and universities are reporting an increase in prevalence of reported stress, anxiety, and depression among college students. The current paper describes the Resilience and Coping Intervention (RCI), a group intervention designed to help college participants identify thoughts, feelings, and coping strategies related to a problematic ex...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: The purpose of this pilot study was to evaluate the Resilience and Coping Intervention (RCI) with college students. Participants: College students (aged 18-23) from a large Midwest US university who volunteered for a randomized controlled trial during the 2015 spring semester. Methods: College students were randomly assigned to an i...
Article
Full-text available
The literature on children’s responses to disasters is well developed with increasing attention to the confounding experiences of displacement. This paper presents an overview of the emotional and behavioral effects of displacement on children and adolescents and describes their educational adjustment in terms of both academic achievement and schoo...
Article
Full-text available
Children have been identified as particularly vulnerable to psychological and behavioral difficulties following disaster. Public child and family disaster communication is one public health tool that can be utilized to promote coping/resilience and ameliorate maladaptive child reactions following an event. We conducted a review of the public disast...
Article
On November 17, 2013, a series of tornadoes struck several communities in central Illinois. Approximately four months following these tornadoes we surveyed residents in Washington and Pekin, Illinois to examine the relationships between disaster communication (i.e., tornado media use, tornado social media use, tornado talk, and tornado mental healt...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction. On May 22, 2011 the deadliest tornado in the United States since 1947 struck Joplin, Missouri killing 161 people, injuring approximately 1,150 individuals, and causing approximately $2.8 billion in economic losses. Methods. This study examined the mental health effects of this event through a random digit dialing sample (N = 380) of J...
Article
Full-text available
This study evaluated the Resilience and Coping Intervention for Children (RCI), a group intervention to increase coping skills and resilience in children and adolescents. RCI was delivered to children and adolescents residing in five at-risk neighborhoods in a southern U.S. city. Children's and adolescent's self-report of coping strategies, strengt...
Article
Full-text available
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health disorder that occurs for some individuals following a traumatic experience and can cause significant health, mental health, and functioning problems. The concept of PTSD has multiple components (cause, reactions, and treatment), which provides for great variety in the course of an individual w...
Article
Full-text available
This paper reviews children's reactions to disasters and the personal and situational factors that influence their reactions. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and posttraumatic stress reactions are the most commonly studied outcomes, though other conditions also occur including anxiety, depression, behavior problems, and substance use. More rec...
Article
Full-text available
This review examines family (demographics, parent reactions and interactions, and parenting style) and social (remote effects, disaster media coverage, exposure to secondary adversities, and social support) factors that influence children's disaster reactions. Lower family socioeconomic status, high parental stress, poor parental coping, contact wi...
Article
Full-text available
A community is resilient if it is able to “bounce forward” after an adverse event. Community resilience is generally considered a process that is indicated by community adaptation following a disaster or crisis. In this article, we employ media and communication perspectives (communication ecology, public relations, and strategic communication) to...
Article
This article describes an application of the Communities Advancing Resilience Toolkit Assessment Survey using a sample of affiliated volunteer responders. The Communities Advancing Resilience Toolkit Assessment Survey is a theory-based, evidence-informed instrument. Early applications of the survey identified four domains: Connection and Caring, Re...
Article
Full-text available
Initial interest in community resilience by the U.S. federal government has been followed by waves of community resilience theory building and of community resilience assessment and intervention development and testing. This special issue of American Behavioral Scientist includes reviews of recent work to conceptualize, measure, and foster communit...
Article
Full-text available
In Spring 2011, record-level tornadoes in the South and Midwest United States resulted in significant human injury and death. In response, the National Weather Service (NWS) developed new warning messages for the 2012 storm season, utilizing more frightening warning language and more specific directions. The current study tested the effectiveness o...
Article
Full-text available
A comprehensive review of online, official, and scientific literature was carried out in 2012–13 to develop a framework of disaster social media. This framework can be used to facilitate the creation of disaster social media tools, the formulation of disaster social media implementation processes, and the scientific study of disaster social media e...
Article
Full-text available
This research examined how social self-efficacy, collective self-esteem, and need to belong can be used to predict teens' use of social media. The particular focus was on how these social psychological variables together with social media use account for variation in teens' participation in a flash mob – an exemplar of 21st-century collective actio...
Article
Full-text available
This study explored television viewing of the September 11 attacks in 99 survivors of the Oklahoma City bombing and examined the relationships of event-related television viewing with concerns about safety and danger in survivors with and without bombing-related posttraumatic stress disorder. The number of hours of viewing September 11 television c...
Article
Full-text available
In 2011 a deadly tornado struck Joplin, Missouri, killing 158 people. Six months after this disaster, we conducted a random digit dialing telephone survey of Joplin adult residents (N = 380) to examine the relationships between disaster experience, posttraumatic stress (PTS) symptoms, and disaster interpersonal communication. We found that tornado...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines the effects of live-tweeting during a 2012 presidential debate. We assessed the influence of sociodemographics and political and campaign characteristics on amount of tweeting during the debate, and also the effect of tweeting frequency on debate attitudes and knowledge. Results indicate that males tweeted more frequently than f...
Article
Full-text available
Twitter offers a function called live-tweeting that allows users to communicate about events with each other in real time. This study examines the use of live-tweeting during a 2012 Republican Primary Debate by examining the 181,780 tweets posted during the nationally televised debate. Live-tweeting offers users an opportunity to engage in public c...
Article
Full-text available
Flash mobs are new, emerging, and evolving social phenomena that have recently been associated with youth violence in the US cities. The current study explores how youth understand flash mobs through focus groups conducted in Kansas City, Missouri (a site of violent youth flash mobs). Results indicate that youth have varying familiarity with flash...
Article
Full-text available
This research used a survey to examine how 9/11 television viewing, emotions, and parental conversation influenced current sociopolitical attitudes of young adults who were children in 2001. Young adults who watched more television coverage of the 9/11 attacks as children were found to exhibit lower levels of social trust and support for immigratio...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines the "Twitter election of 2012," and specifically young citizens' "social watching" behaviors while live-tweeting a 2012 nationally televised Republican primary debate. We find several important relationships between key demographic, social, and political engagement variables and participants' social watching activity (frequency...
Article
Full-text available
The Communities Advancing Resilience Toolkit (CART)* is a community-driven, publicly available, theory-based, and evidence-informed community intervention designed to build community resilience to disasters and other adversities. Based on principles of participatory action research, CART applications contribute to community resilience by encouragin...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined the effects of tweeting while watching a presidential debate (live-tweeting) during the 2012 U.S. election. We examined candidate evaluations and debate attitudes for participants who did and did not tweet while watching a presidential or vice presidential debate. We found that tweeting while watching a debate was related to par...
Article
Full-text available
This exploratory pilot study examined the psychosocial effects of the war in Iraq, patriotism, and attention to war-related media coverage in the children of National Guard troops across phases of parental deployment--pre deployment, during deployment, and post deployment. Participants included 11 children, ages 8 to 18 years. Data collected in eac...
Article
Full-text available
This research examines mass media depictions of major American natural disasters that occurred between 2000 and 2010. Results indicate that mass media cover natural disasters for shorter periods of time than they do other issues; that media coverage tends to focus on the current impact of disasters on humans, the built environment, and the natural...
Article
Full-text available
Hurricane Katrina was the third deadliest and most costly storm to the United States. Response by spiritual and faith communities played an important role in addressing the needs of evacuees displaced by the storm. The purpose of the current focus group study was to document perspectives from faith-based relief providers in Dallas, Texas responding...
Article
Full-text available
This case study describes the process and outcomes of the Northwest Center for Public Health Practice Child and Family Disaster Research Training (UWDRT) Program housed at the University of Washington, which used web-based distance learning technology. The purposes of this program were to provide training and to establish a regional cadre of resear...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Providers serving children's mental health needs face the complexities of tailoring assessments based on developmental stages, family characteristics, school involvement, and cultural and economic factors. This task is even more challenging in the face of a disaster, terrorist incident, or other mass trauma event. Traditional mental hea...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Disasters have been found to significantly impact mental and behavioral health.1 A public health response to disaster seeks to ameliorate this impact by identifying mental/behavioral health effects resulting from an event and by promoting healthy disaster-related outcomes. Disaster communication interventions are effective tools that di...
Article
Full-text available
Frequency and quality of family deployment communication was assessed and examined in conjunction with emotions and behaviors reported by military children and spouses (N = 26) before, during, and after deployment. Child deployment communication with siblings was associated with positive child outcomes. Conversely, before and during deployment chil...
Article
Full-text available
Changes in relationships, roles, and dynamics associated with deployment of troops to the Global War on Terror can create challenges for their families as non-deployed spouses and their children take on new responsibilities. Children, aged 6 to 18 years, of deployed National Guard troops were assessed to determine the children's perceptions about h...
Article
Full-text available
The objective of this study was to examine terrorism media coverage and psychiatric outcomes in directly-exposed terrorism survivors. The study used (1) self-report questionnaires to retrospectively assess event-related media behaviors and reactions in a cross sectional design and (2) longitudinal structured diagnostic interviews to assess psychopa...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined deployment effects in children and spouses of National Guard troops using a longitudinal design to assess 18 children (ages 6 to 17 years) and 13 nondeployed spouses before, during, and after deployment. Both self- and parent reports revealed that children of deployed service personnel experienced emotional and behavioral sympto...
Article
Full-text available
As online and mobile information technologies continue to become more commonplace, Americans are increasingly turning to these sources for news. Online news sites often allow readers to post comments about news stories. Using an experiment, the authors of this study sought to understand how user comments influence individual perceptions of media bi...
Article
Full-text available
Disaster mental health is a burgeoning field with numerous opportunities for professional involvement in preparedness, response, and recovery efforts. Research is essential to advance professional understanding of risk and protective factors associated with disaster outcomes; to develop an evidence base for acute, intermediate, and long-term mental...