From April 15th -17th, 2016, a symposium entitled ‘Growing a Person-Centered Society in Europe’ took place in Lausanne. It was organized by the Network of European Associations for Person-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapy and Counselling (PCE Europe). Veniamin Kolpachnikov, Associate Professor at the Department of Psychology of Personality, who participated in the symposium, shared some details about the event.
The event took place at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne(EPFL) campus. It attracted 160 psychologists, teachers, sociologists, doctors, historians, politicians, and businesspeople from 19 European countries.
The symposium opened with a presentation by Judy Moore (UK) and Jean-Marc Randin (Switzerland) entitled ‘Deepening our Understanding of the Person’. The paper emphasized the importance and relevance of understanding a person, which is developed in the person-centered approach, the necessity of considering a person’s ability to self-actualize, to make free and responsible choices, and to act in building a practice of social, educational, medical, and business institutions in modern Europe and globally.
The numerous lectures and workshops focused on various aspects and forms of person-oriented practice in psychotherapy, education, business relations, politics and other areas. Professor Gerhard Stumm (Austria) presented a new form of psychotherapeutic practice, based on person-oriented work with ‘parts’ of personality.Yvan Ellingham (England) presented an original synthetic person-oriented model of ‘madness’ based on works by Garry Prouty, a pre-therapy practitioner, and contemporary symbolism theories. Professor Peter F. Schmid (Austria) spoke on an interesting topic, ‘Therapy through love?’
Veniamin Kolpachnikov, Associate Professor at the Department of Psychology of Personality, presented his paper on ‘Client-Centered Psychotherapy from Standpoint of Cultural-Activity Theory: CCT as a Psychotechnical System’.
As part of the general discussion about person-centered leadership, Eva Sollárová (Slovakia) shared her personal experience of leadership in education and business environment in Slovakia, and Margaret Hannah (UK) spoke about the experience of person-centered organization of medical services in Scotland.
The organizers and all the participants created an interested, warm, person-oriented atmosphere at the Symposium. The Community Meetings, where the participants had the opportunity to discuss some substantial, organizational and personal problems openly, also contributed to the atmosphere.
More information about the event is available on the Symposium website.
The next PCE Europe symposium will take place in 2018 in Vienna, Austria.