Telling a different story

AI’s contribution to creating dialogue and Psychologically Informed Environments

AP co-director Suzanne Quinney has contributed a chapter on Appreciative Inquiry to a new book on PIEs – psychologically-informed environments.

Authors from both the US and UK combine to describe practices that better serve vulnerable people without homes. In his foreword, Joe Finn, president/executive director of Massachusetts Housing & Shelter Alliance says: ‘A real and vital dialogue has begun with our colleagues across the sea. Hopefully, the reader of this work will, too, become part of such an important conversation.’ 

The inspiration behind this book is Jay S. Levy, who is also the main author – you can see more about his work here…


Each innovation has a common purpose – to create better journeys into social inclusion for those without a home, introducing the most innovative best practice ideas on homelessness from both the US and UK.

‘I spent quite a lot of time last year writing a chapter for a book called Cross-cultural dialogues on Homelessness, so it’s very satisfying to see it in print now,’ she says. ‘It was great meeting fellow UK authors Robin Johnson and John Conolly at a mini-book launch at the conference Rethinking Homelessness – Connecting Housing, Health and Inclusion, earlier this month.’

Suzanne connected with author/editor Robin Johnson as part of the work she did for Westminster city council training hostel staff. She shared AP’s video about hostels with him, which led him to propose Suzanne contributing an article – which turned into two… ‘Robin then connected me with Jay via LinkedIn,’ she says. ‘Jay and I chatted on Linked in – when I shared the article with him, he asked if I could write a chapter. Robin and Jay first met on LinkedIn, too!’ 

You can find out more about PIEs here… 

Each chapter contains succinct summaries of very different concepts, each with direct practical application for services, including pretreatment, Trauma Informed Care (TIC) and Psychologically Informed Environments (PIE). Several contributions are from the originators of the concepts such as Robin Johnson (PIE) and Jay Levy (pretreatment). In her chapter,  Suzanne also talks about the strength-based work of the Mayday Trust and Camerados – the organisation founded by Maff Potts, alongside AP’s work in the area. AP has been using Appreciative Inquiry to support this approach for some time with organisations such as Bournemouth Churches Housing Association (BCHA), Richmond Fellowship, Barnardos, and The Basement Advisory Service Liverpool.

The book is being launched in the US on 31 March, and is available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble. The e-version is just £6.41.

To date, Jay has donated $3,000 dollars to homeless charities from the sale of his books – and is looking forward to being able to donate more.