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Professor Gabriella Rundblad



Theme 1 - Preparedness

King's College London

Gabriella is a Professor of Language and Cognition at King’s, which she joined as Lecturer in 2004. She is a Cognitive Linguist who specialises in language and cognition in health, risk and disaster communication, including people currently facing an inequitable burden of risk such as ethnic minorities and neurodiverse individuals. Through a range of projects, Gabriella has shown how linguistic techniques, together with folk beliefs, impact people’s perceptions of risk and risk terminology and ultimately their behaviour; e.g. how public authorities are linguistically obscured during disasters, resulting in diminished public trust and compliance with public health advice, how distinctly different linguistic taxonomies between lay and professional discourses prevent successful communication around contamination, and how media uses a variety of metaphors to emotionally engage the public. As evidenced in one of King’s Impact Case Studies for REF 2021, her guidelines for professionals have improved compliance rates, enhanced consumer trust, and ultimately decreased morbidities and mortalities.