Jack M. Saul

Jack Saul is the director of the International Trauma Studies Program (ITSP), a research and training institute based in New York City.  ITSP is committed to enhancing the natural resilience and coping capacities in individuals, families, and communities that have endured and/or are threatened by traumatic events – domestic and political violence, armed conflict and natural disaster.  He has served on the faculties of New York University School of Medicine – Department of Psychiatry, the New School for Social Research, Clinical Psychology Program, and Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health.  Dr. Saul has created a number of psychosocial programs for populations that have endured war, torture and political violence in New York City and is known for his innovative work with families and communities that integrates testimony, healing, media, and the expressive arts.

He works internationally with humanitarian, human rights, and media organizations on the development and implementation of staff welfare programs.  He completed his doctoral degree at Boston University and clinical internship in child and family therapy at the Judge Baker Guidance Clinic, Harvard Medical School. He has studied systems oriented family therapy at Cambridge Family Institute and the Minuchin Center for the Family. 

In my career as a psychologist, I have sought to shift the discourse about trauma and mental health and to one that includes the entire ecology of the individual and his/her collective:

It is critical to remember that collective trauma requires collective responses. As we observed, there is a constant interplay between individual and collective healing. This collective dimension was both necessary for and desired by many of the people with whom we worked. For them, this dimension was an important first step on the road to individual healing, whether it involved public memorialization, acknowledgement, or accountability. Similarly, the process of collective narration is crucial to give the shared experience of trauma both meaning and purpose. Above all, recovery is a relational process; its success depends on competent leadership and the restoration of trusting caring relationships. (Collective Trauma, Collective Healing, 2013)

My current project, the Moral Injury Public Listening Project, is an art installation intended to amplify the voices of veterans, journalists and other witnesses of war so that they are not alone with their experiences – and so that we the public are not cut off from them. One of the hindrances to healing for those who were soldiers, journalists and humanitarian and human rights practitioners in the recent wars, is that they often suffer alone from their endured experiences. It is important that they share these with us, the public, no matter how troubling or morally challenging. We need to know as a country what goes on in war and they need focused listening and acknowledgement of what they have been through. We need a public space where we are able to share in their experiences and grow from them together.

Awards and Honors

2009 •   Max Heyman Award for Scholarship on Holocaust and Genocide, awarded to ITSP and African Refuge by the American Orthopsychiatric Association
2008 •   American Family Therapy Academy Award for Distinguished Contribution to Social Justice
2006 •   American Cape Mount Association- Made Honorary Chief, Porkpa District of Liberia for Contribution to the Higher Education of Liberians and to the Liberian Diaspora Community in the US
2005 •   Ministry of Health, Kosovo- Acknowledgement for the Contribution and the Development of Health Services in Kosovo
2002 •   Marion Langer Award of the American Orthopsychiatric Association for Exemplary Work in the Areas of Social Advocacy and Human Rights
2002 •   Adelphi School of Social Work Award for Contribution to the Field of Trauma Studies
1998 •   Hebrew Union College Joseph Award for Humanitarian Service for Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture
1998 •   New York University Curricular Development Challenge Grant for the International Trauma Studies Program
1997 •   Family Therapy Networker Innovations in Training Award for Training Program at Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture
1986 •   Retirement Research Foundation National Media Awards, First Prize for Source of Strength: Ethnic Identity in Later Life (Documentary video)
1985 •   International Film and TV Festival of New York, Silver Medal for Source of Strength: Ethnic Identity Later in Life (Documentary video)
Selected Publications

  • Saul, J. (2013). Collective Trauma, Collective Healing: Promoting Community Resilience in the Aftermath of Disaster.New York: Routledge Psychosocial Stress Series.
Articles and Chapters
  • Saul, J. (2019). Promoting collective recovery in an immigrant/refugee community following massive trauma.  In Structural Competency in Mental Health and Medicine. Helena Hansen and Jonathan Metzl, Eds. New York: Springer.
  • Saul, J. and Simon, W. (December, 2016). Building resilience in families, communities and organizations: A training program in global mental health and psychosocial support. Family Process, Vol 55(4), pp. 689-699.
  • Celermajer, D.. & Saul, J. (2016).  Preventing torture in Nepal: A public health and human rights intervention. Journal of Bioethical Inquiry. Springer
  • Saul, J. (2012). Psychological and situational factors involved in the participation in torture. Expert report prepared for the Enhancing Human Rights Project. University of Sydney.
  • Saul, J. and Bava, S. (2009). Implementing collective approaches to massive trauma/loss: Implications for recovery, peace-building and development. International Conflict Research Institute, University of Ulster.
  • Saul, J. (2008) The International trauma studies program. In Stout, Chris, ed. The New Humanitarians: Inspiration, Innovations, and Blue Prints for Visionaries. Praeger.
  • Saul, J. (Winter, 2007). Promoting community resilience in lower Manhattan after September 11, 2001.  In Systemic responses to disaster: Stories in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina. American Family Academy Monograph Series, pp. 69-75.
  • Fullilove, M., & Saul, J.  (2006) Rebuilding communities post-disaster: Lessons from 9/11.  In Y. Neria, R, Gross, R. Marshall, R., E. Susser (Eds.), September 11, 2001: Treatment, research and public mental health in the wake of a terrorist attack(pp.).  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (pp/ 164-177).
  • Saul, J. (2005).  Promoting community resilience in lower Manhattan after September 11, 2001.  In Y. Danieli & R. Dingman (Eds.)   On the Ground after September 11: Mental health responses and practical knowledge gained. Binghamton, NY: Hayworth Press (pp. 470-478).
  • Weine, S., Ukshini, S., Griffith, J., Agani, F., Pulleyblank-Coffey, E., Ulaj, J., Becker, C., Ajeti, L., Griffith, M., Alidemaj-Sereqi, V., Landau, J., Assllani, M., Pavkovic, I., Bunjaku, A., Rolland, J., Cala, G., Saul, J., Makolli, S., Sluzki, C., Statovci, S. (2005). A family approach to severe mental illness in post-war Kosova. Psychiatry. Vol. 68 (1).
  • Landau, J. & Saul, J. (2005). “Enhancing family and community resilience in the face of major disaster.” A. Roizblatt, (Ed.). Terapias de Parejas y Familias del Siglo XX para el Siglo XXI. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Mediterrénao.
  • Saul, J., Breindel, H., Margolies, L, Hamilton, L., Jacobs, N. (2004). Stories from the Ground: A community initiated narrative archive in lower Manhattan post 9/11. Proceeds of the International Oral History Association World Congress.
  • Saul, J. (2004). Promoting community recovery in lower Manhattan after September 11, 2001. Bulletin of the Royal Institute for Interfaith Studies5, no.2 Autumn/Winter: 1-16.
  • Landau, J. & Saul, J. (2004) Facilitating family and community resilience in response to major disaster.  In F. Walsh and M. McGoldrick (Eds.), Living beyond loss.New York: Norton.
  • Saul, J. (2003, Apr. 4). Ghost-painting grandfather’s story to understand his own, The Forward, p. 4.
  • Saul, J., Ukshini, S., Blyta, A., & Statovci, S. (2003). Strengths based treatment of trauma in the aging: An Albanian Kosovar case study.  In J. Ronch, & J. Goldfield (Eds.),Mental wellness in aging: Strength based approaches(299-314).  London: Health Professions Press.
  • Saul, J. (2002, Sept. 11). 2 pillars are crucial to helping children adjust, New York Times. p. 17.
  • Weine, S., Danieli, Y., Silove, D., Van Ommeren, M., Fairbank, J., Saul, J. (2002). Guidelines for international training in mental health and psychosocial interventions for trauma exposed populations in clinical and community settings, Psychiatry: Interpersonal and Biological Processes,Volume 65 Number 2.
  • Saul, J. (2000). Mapping trauma: a multi-systemic approach. Psychosocial Notebook. International Organization for Migration. November.
  • Saul, J. (1999). Working with survivors of torture and political violence in New York City.  Zeitschrift  fur Politische Psychologie, 7(1-2),221 – 232.
  • Saul, J. (1997, Nov. 1).  Forgotten in the hoopla: Tibet’s young torture victims.The New York Times.
  • Saul, J. (1997). Helping the children of war. The Lancet. Vol. 349, April.
  • Perel, E., & Saul, J. (1989).  A family therapy approach to Holocaust survivor families. In P. Marcus, & A. Rosenberg  (Eds.), Healing their wounds: Psychotherapy with Holocaust survivors and their families. New York: Praeger.
  • Saul, J.  (1985). Ethnic identity and psychological adjustment in old age.   New York, NY:
  • Center on Ethnicity, Behavior and Communication, American Jewish Committee Monograph.
  • Saul, J.  (1984). Ethnic identity and psychological adjustment in old age. The Gerontologist, 3/84.
Video Productions
  • Saul, J. (Producer), and Gampel, A. (Director). (2003) Everything’s back to normal in New York City: Below Canal, a work in progress. New York: Downtown Community Resource Center, International Trauma Studies Program, New York University.
  • Saul, J. (Producer), and Ray, J (Director). (2002) A partnership for kids: post 9/11 coping strategies for the school community. [Video] New York: International Trauma Studies Program, New York University.
  • Saul, J. (Producer) and Reisner, S. (Director), (2000) Head soup: The work of Theater Arts Against Political Violence, New York: Refuge, Inc.
  • Saul, J. and Minuchin, S., (1991), Prisoners or jailers: working with out of control children in family therapy.  New York: Family Studies, Inc.
  • Saul, J. (Writer and Producer), and Spiegel, P. (Producer and Director), (1985) Sources of strength: Jewish ethnicity in later life. New York, NY: American Jewish Committee.
Web Installations
    • Saul, J. (2003) Spring and Slaughter: Kishinev Pogrom 1903 –2003. A multimedia web installation commemorating the 100thanniversary of the Kishinev Pogrom. www.kishinevpogrom.com
    • Saul, J., (2004) Stories from the Ground: the Lower Manhattan Video Narrative Archive Project. htpp://www.nyu.edu/trauma.studies/archivehttp://itspnyc.org/archive
Press Coverage
    • Rosenberg, Tina, To hell and back, New York Times Magazine, Dec. 1997 http://www.itspnyc.org/media_hell.html
    • Wertheimer, Linda, Political Asylum, All Things Considered, National Public Radio, 2/98
    • Steffen, Sheila, Cycle of Violence and Trauma, World News, CNN, 2/98
    • Cohen, Patty, The study of trauma graduates at last. New York Times, May 8, 1999 http://www.itspnyc.org/media_graduates.html
    • Killen, Andreas, Pundits of Pain, com/books/it/2000/02/11/trauma
    • Joyce, Chris, Families of the Missing, All Things Considered, National Public Radio, 9/02
    • Joyce, Chris, Trauma and the Media, All Things Considered, National Public Radio, 9/02
    • Silberner, JoAnne, Dealing with the Stress of 9/11, Morning Edition, National Public Radio, 1/02
    • New York Voices, WNYC TV– Coming together to heal, April, 2002 http://www.thirteen.org/nyvoices/transcripts/saul.html
    • Goode, Erica, and Emily Eaken – Mental health: the profession tests its limits – 2 pillars are crucial to helping children adjust, New York Times, September 11, 2002. http://www.nytimes.com/2002/09/11/us/threats-and-responses-the-doctors-mental-health-the-profession-tests-its-limits.html
    • Parker, Ian, Victims and Volunteers, The New Yorker. 1-26-04
    • Interview: An Evening With … General Elections and the Fear Factor, October, 2004 KCBX FM,Santa Barbara Public Radio
    • Waters, Rob, The citizen therapist: Making a difference in the wider world. Surviving disaster: Jack Saul believes communities are the antidote for trauma. Psychotherapy Networker, Nov./Dec. 2004
    • http://www.itspnyc.org/perspective_surviving.html
    • New York Voices, WNYC-TV– The Liberians of Staten Island, November, 2007
    • New York Daily News, Staten Island Group Helps Victims of African Conflict
    • March, Julie and Reichgott, Megan, AP World, Witnessing Trauma: How AP’s staff copes with exposure to disturbing events. Summer 2010.
    • Matloff, Judith, New York: 10 ans après, L’actualite. 11, 2011.
    • Sky Television Italy. Settembre: deici anni fa. Sept.8, 2011.
    • Brucharth, Martin, Drab på journalister mørklægger krig. Danish daily Information, 15, 2014. http://www.information.dk/509502