Keynote Speaker

Bruce Wampold

Bruce E. Wampold, who was trained in mathematics (BA, University of Washington) before earning his doctorate in Counseling Psychology (Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara), is Professor Emeritus of Counseling Psychology at the University of Wisconsin—Madison, and Senior Researcher at the Research Institute at Modum Bad Psychiatric Center in Vikersund, Norway.  He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and Board Certified in Counseling Psychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology. Currently his work involves understanding counseling and psychotherapy from empirical, historical, and anthropological perspectives, which has led to the development of a contextual model from which to understand the benefits of counseling and psychotherapy. As well, he has explored social healing in various contexts, including placebos, medicine, psychotherapy, and various cultural healing practices.   His work is summarized in The Great Psychotherapy Debate: The Evidence for How Psychotherapy Works (with Z. Imel, Taylor and Francis, 2015) as well as numerous articles and chapters.  He is recipient of the of the 2007 Distinguished Professional Contributions to Applied Research Award from the American Psychological Association, the 2015 Distinguished Research Career Award from the Society for Psychotherapy Research, and the 2019 Gold Medal Award for Life Achievement in the Application of Psychology from the American Psychological Foundation.

The Humanistic Aspects of Effective Psychotherapy

It is now well documented that psychotherapy is effective, yet research has failed to definitely determine how psychotherapy works.  Nevertheless, there is evidence that the humanistic elements of psychotherapy are intimately involved in producing the benefits of psychotherapy.  In this presentation, a model is presented for how the humanistic components are integral components of all effective psychotherapy.  Implications of the model for improving mental health services, for training therapists, and for research are discussed.

Margherita Spagnuolo Lobb

Psy D and researcher, international trainer, Director of the Istituto di Gestalt HCC Italy (Syracuse, Palermo and Milan). In her work, she has developed hermeneutically the principles of Gestalt therapy into a field oriented, phenomenological and aesthetic approach. Her main trainers: the Polster’s, Isadore From and Daniel Stern. Her present research fields: observative measurers of the “dance” of reciprocity between caregivers and child and between therapist and client; the construct of Aesthetic Relational Knowledge of the therapist. She has written extensively in scientific journals, her book The Now-for-Next in Psychotherapy is available in 8 languages. She edits the Gestalt Therapy Book Series at Routledge. Past President of EAGT, FIAP, SIPG, FISIG. She received the Lifelong Achievement Award from the Association for the Advancement of Gestalt Therapy – AAGT (Toronto, Canada, August 2018).

Examples of Gestalt therapy researches to develop our phenomenological, aesthetic and field oriented approach

I will outline characteristics of Gestalt therapy research based on its three epistemological roots: fundamental aspects of a phenomenological research; proposals to include aesthetics of contact in research; how to research with the organism/environment field.

I will then describe a research example, illustrating the construct of Aesthetic Relational Knowledge and the paradigm of Reciprocity.

Finally, I will focus on ethical aspects of Gestalt therapy research, between the need of outcome research and the responsibility to show what we do as we “have fun” in our practice, while discovering new territories to advance our humanity.

Peter Schulthess

born 1950, is practicing as Gestalt therapist since 1976 in Zurich (Switzerland) in private practice. He is past president of EAGT and SVG. Today he is Board member of ASP (Association of Swiss Psychotherapists) and the Network Gestalt therapy Switzerland. Actually he is the chair of the Science and Research Committee of EAP. He coordinated a comparative process and outcome study with 10 different modalities in Switzerland (2006 – 2020) and has published as co-author several articles around this study. He is teaching Gestalt therapy in various countries on different continents. He lives in Switzerland, Greece and Philippines. www.pschulthess.ch

How to identify Gestalt Interventions on tape recorded sessions.

Introduction to a manual of 100 interventions from different therapeutic approaches.

Abstract: Effectiveness studies have often the lack, that no one controlled, what therapists really did during the therapy sessions.

In a naturalistic process- and outcome a Swiss researcher team developed a manual with 100 interventions from 10 different modalities and so called “general interventions”, including Gestalt interventions. “Blind” raters (they did not know what kind of therapy approach is practiced here) were trained to identify interventions on tape recorded sessions. I have presented some results of this study already in the first edition of “Towards a Resarch Tradition in Gestalt Therapy” (2016), edited by Jan Roubal. I will present here, how we built and developed this research manual to measure the so called treatment fidelity as part of our project. I will present some results that we found and conclusions that can made based on these results. I will pick up also the controversial discussion that arose around the Gestalt Fidelity Scale of Madeleine Fogarty and her colleagues and discuss the value of such scales and it’s limits.

Christine Stevens

Christine Stevens PhD is Editor of The British Gestalt Journal. She is a Gestalt therapist, supervisor, international trainer, writer and member of faculty for the Psychotherapy Doctorate Programmes at Metanoia Institute, London, validated by Middlesex University.  She is a member of the EAGT Research Committee. As Research Lead for the UKAGP, Christine is co-ordinating a team to develop Case-Study research by Gestalt Practitioners in the UK. She is Director of The Clay Studio, Nottingham, where she is involved in arts-based social engagement work. She is particularly interested in inter-disciplinary research in psychotherapy and creative practice.

Research Practitioners: Developing our Research Capacity as a Gestalt Community

Abstract: Drawing on initiatives from other humanistic modalities, I suggest we play to our strengths and focus on practice-based evidence rather than evidence-based practice. I discuss how case-study is integral to our training and development as Gestalt therapists. I deconstruct types of case study research and suggest how across training centres in our countries and also with experienced therapists in individual practice, via Practice Research Networks, we can build large data sets of rigorous and detailed case material. Meta-analysis can address questions about how we practice and whether it is effective.

Robert Elliott

Ph.D., is Professor of Counselling at the University of Strathclyde.  He received his doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and is professor emeritus of psychology at the University of Toledo (Ohio). He has spent most of his career as a psychotherapy researcher trying out and inventing different research methods. He is co-author of Facilitating emotional change (1993), Learning Emotion-Focused Therapy (2004), Research methods in clinical psychology (3rd ed., 2015), as well as more than 170 journal articles and book chapters. He is past president of the Society for Psychotherapy Research, and previously co-edited the journals Psychotherapy Research, and Person-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapies.  He is a fellow in the APA divisions of Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy, and Humanistic Psychology.  He has received the Distinguished Research Career Award of the Society for Psychotherapy Research, and the Carl Rogers Award from the APA Division of Humanistic Psychology. He enjoys running, science fiction and all kinds of music.

Research & Practice in Gestalt Therapy: Promoting the Dialogue

Throughout my career I’ve loved both doing therapy and doing research on therapy.  In this talk I’ll begin by laying out how research and practice can help each other. Then I’ll describe how in my own career as a therapist-researcher I’ve tried to move past the research vs practice dichotomy.  I’ll talk about some of the strategies I’ve used to do this, including doing research on my own practice to make me a better therapist, creating research tools to make more clinically interesting research possible, and some promising practice-friendly approaches to research.


Vincent Beja

On the relevance of Research in Gestalt Therapy

Our dear Gestalt colleague and speaker at the International Conference on Research in Gestalt Therapy 2022 in Hamburg – Vincent Beja – answered a few of our questions:

• Why is Gestalt Research important?
• Why are you willing to work on this project?
• What does Gestalt have to give to the world?
• Why should you definitely register for the conference?

Dr. Otto Glanzer

On the relevance of Research in Gestalt Therapy

We asked our dear Gestalt-colleague and speaker at the Research Conference in Hamburg 2022 – Dr. Otto Glanzer – a few questions about Research in Gestalt:

· Why is Gestalt research important (also for individual practitioners)?/ What is the benefit of Gestalt research?
· Why are you willing to work on this project?
· What does Gestalt have to give to the world?