Hi, I’m Alexander Thompson. Welcome to Thompson Thinks.
Established in 2020 amid the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, Thompson Thinks is purposed at providing an outlet for narrative and discourse on the world of disaster management, climate change, and health.
I commenced my career in this sector in 2016, within a national UK police force, having undertaken postgraduate study for a Master of Science in Crisis & Disaster Management.
In 2018 I transitioned from a world in blue to a world in… blue, and found my new home in the National Health Service (NHS) in England, where I am proud to still work today. I recently transitioned from the role of Head of Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response to my present-day role of Head of the Regional Operations Centre for NHS England and NHS Improvement – South West.
In my career to date I have supported the response to a variety of major incidents, from the tragic Croydon Tram Crash of November 2016 through to the current public health emergency of international concern and global pandemic, COVID-19.
Outside the NHS, I volunteer with the nation’s leading health charity, St John Ambulance. I currently have the privilege of serving as the National Community Response Lead, working on a range of community response programmes including homeless provision, developing falls response projects, hospital volunteering, community first responders, night time economy and a range of other initiatives. Previously I have been a District Manager twice, covering two different parts of England and providing volunteer leadership to anywhere between 400 and 1400 volunteers delivering a range of charitable community-based activity.
In October 2020 I commenced research as a PhD student with UCL’s Institute of Risk and Disaster Reduction. My research focuses on the cross-section between disasters, climate change, and health. My academic interests are broad, but I am particularly drawn to the way we create vulnerability in relation to future climate-disaster hazards, as well as how health systems prepare for and respond to extreme climatic events such as wildfires.
I am a Fellow and Vice-Chair of the Institute of Civil Protection and Emergency Management. I am a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and up until recently was a Fellow of The Royal Society for Public Health.
Outside of the world of disasters you are likely to find me:
singing sea shanties, drinking ale from a pewter tankard and wishing I was on a tall-ship sailing the seven seas;
in-front of the television with a tub of popcorn and a Louis Theroux documentary;
or pretending to be half-decent at Olympic Weightlifting and Powerlifting.
Call me eclectic...
The comments, views, and opinions in my blogs and publications are all my own unless clearly cited otherwise.