Benni Zaiser

Board Member - Ontario, Canada

Benni serves as a Crisis Intervention Team officer with York Regional Police, one of Canada's largest police services, and works as an independent behavioural scientist. His career in crisis intervention started with Germany's federal crisis negotiations team and continued at the University of Liverpool’s Institute of Population Health, where he was part of the Tactical Decision Making Research Group and earned his PhD in psychology. 

Now based in the Greater Toronto Area, he is passionately exploring the cognitive processes that underlie empathy-based rapport-building and decision making in crisis intervention contexts and beyond. His research regularly includes police officers and translates into evidence-based training and peer-reviewed publications. He has also edited a number of corresponding book projects under the SpringerNature umbrellatage. 

Benni also serves on the Toronto Police Services Board's Mental Health & Addictions Advisory Panel and as the vice-chair of the board of directors for Distress and Crisis Ontario, the province's umbrella organization for suicide prevention and crisis intervention helplines. He is committed to using his unique insights as a police officer, researcher, and community advocate to deepen understanding of the challenges faced by vulnerable community members during encounters with the police, both on an individual and systemic level.

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