A Cognitive-Behavioral Standpoint on the Perceived Consequences of a Major Seismic Event in Relation to Optimism and Pre-hazard Emotional Distress

  • Eugen Avram
  • Ioana R. Podina
  • Cezar Giosan


The study examined a circumscribed class of cognitions (i.e., dispositional optimism and perceived consequences) in connection to the emotional distress experienced in anticipation of a major seismic event (i.e., pre-hazard emotional distress). Grounded on cognitive-behavioral theory, it was argued that dispositional optimism exerts distal influence on distress, while the perceived consequences of a major seismic event are proximal to distress and, therefore, interpose the optimism-distress relationship. The hypothesis was tested via a cross-sectional study on a sample of 189 volunteers located in areas of high seismic hazard. Participants reported their level of pre-hazard emotional distress, their dispositional optimism, and their perceived consequences of a major seismic hazard. The results showed that there was a partial indirect effect from dispositional optimism to emotional distress via perceived consequences, indirect effect = −0.190, SE = 0.114, 95 % CI [−0.487; −0.021], k2 = 0.051. These findings could inform future prevention programs targeting emotional distress in anticipation of a natural hazard with impact on post-disaster recovery.


Distress Seismic hazard Optimism Perceived consequences CBT 



This work was supported by a grant of the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research and Innovation, CNCS—UEFISCDI, project number PN II-RU-TE-2014-4-2481, contract number 293/01/10/2015, coordinated by Dr. Ioana R. Podina.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of BucharestBucharestRomania
  2. 2.Department of Clinical Psychology and PsychotherapyBabeş-Bolyai UniversityCluj-NapocaRomania

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