A postponed Conference
PCCA 2021 CONFERENCE – ONLINE
WALLS – OPEN, CLOSED, SLIDING?
THE VIRUS, EUROPE AND OUR WORLD TODAY
8th – 11th April, 2021
The PCCA 2020 conference WALLS – OPEN, CLOSED, SLIDING? EUROPE AND OUR WORLD TODAY,
The Netherlands in August 2020, had to be postponed.
Our lives had to change dramatically and we had to adjust in order to hopefully survive physically and mentally.
We believe that there is a ‘before’ the pandemic that still exists, there is a ‘present’ that we have to manage as best we can,
and there is a very uncertain future, however the vaccine makes us hopeful.
Based on these considerations, we have decided to pilot a conference in a completely new territory, for the first time online.
Europe, like the rest of the world, is struggling to cope with the traumatic impact of the Corona virus pandemic and its aftermath, which is as yet unknown.
Dark clouds were already gathering across the continent, threatening the union conceived in the shadow of the Holocaust and World War II to avoid a repetition of the horrors of the past. These involved:
- The influx of migrants from Africa and the Middle East, which has introduced fears of ‘invasion’ into the social fabric of European nations.
- The tension in the Middle East: the endless conflict between Israel and Palestine, and the disastrous situation in the region in general.
- The fear of a terrorist attack.
- A disturbing upsurge of neo-Nazism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, xenophobia, racial intolerance, fascism and authoritarianism, and a return to tribalism and the “me – first” mentality.
- Nationalist populism – e.g. Brexit and the rise of far right parties across Europe – reinforced a wish for strong borders/walls to keep out the “other”.
- A growing gap between rich “elites” and the poor (“the people”) – left behind, largely white and “indigenous” – fed by globalization and de-industrialization.
- Instability in the financial sector, which continues to generate tension between the strong EU core, located in the West, and the periphery – the austerity-ridden Mediterranean and the poorer Eastern Europe.
- Growing alarm, alongside denial, over climate change, spawning a culture of intergenerational blame.
Into this already fragile situation the virus pandemic, an invisible enemy, landed like a bombshell, amplifying fantasies of contamination so that human contact itself became a source of danger. This led to:
- Worldwide lockdowns, social distancing and self- isolation.
- The need for decisive action in an health emergency that could easily be, or be seen to be, an invitation to authoritarian leadership that might undermine long-established democratic systems of governance.
- An economic disaster affecting all, but disproportionally those countries with a weaker economy and less stable political systems.
- A massive debt burden left for successor generations.
- Deepening intergenerational tension, for instance over whose care is to be prioritized.
- A further increase in the disparity between the rich, who have increased their wealth, and the poor, who are the victims of this battle, unemployed and with much less resources.
- Divisions and splits are increasing, sometimes reactivating old enmities in response the existential threat posed by the pandemic. Is the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement an instance of this?
- Does the hope now rightly invested in vaccines also conceal a fantasy that they will somehow magically deliver us from the complex situation that now confronts us?
Europe and the world are today deeply traumatized by the loss of many loved ones, often without the ability to pay one’s last respects, and all other kinds of losses on a mass scale. Our old familiar world and much that we used to take for granted are now in the past, and anxiety, disorientation and uncertainty confront us in the present. What resources do we bring to facing this situation as we prepare for the post-traumatic period of rebuilding and reconstruction?
The virus and the consequent lockdown brought a new emphasis on walls – to keep out the virus and its vectors; between the employed and the unemployed; between those able to work and those furloughed to avoid contagion; and between the more privileged, protected from the worst ravages of the virus, and those in the frontline. These set one group apart from the other. Is proper empathy across these walls possible?
Will it be possible to overcome processes of splitting to build on other, more constructive forces, mobilised by the pandemic? For instance, there has been a quiet digital revolution that has brought walls down in a positive way, expanding virtual meeting spaces and relationships. Can this herald a new future of greater connectedness? How will the tension between the intimacy of the local and the seemingly limitless potential of the global play out?
How does all of this impact on the way in which we think about ourselves in relation to our world/nature, our professional activities and our engagement as citizens? Can the pandemic be a stimulus for thinking in a different way – for instance about global warming, and a more ethical and sustainable economy – or will powerful and unseen forces working for a return of the repressed prevail?
THE CONFERENCE SETTING
This first online PCCA conference will create a virtual space in which issues like these can be considered in depth. It is a 4-day, experiential event which will use PCCA’s adapted form of the Group Relations method, developed further to take into account the online setting. It aims to allow participants to supplement their existing views on these matters with observations of what goes on beneath the surface, including their own emotional experience and dynamics that emerge within and between groups. In this way we hope to deepen our understanding of the impact of the virus – real and symbolic – in Europe and more widely in Our World Today, and how this blends into the pre-virus world.
The work will begin with the lived experience of conference participants, taking this as its raw material.
To provide a space for participants to explore how issues around the theme WALLS – OPEN, CLOSED, SLIDING AND THE VIRUS play themselves out in the conference itself, and in Europe and in Our World today in general.
Relevant issues that could be explored include the following: what it the emotional contamination of the virus? Does the idea of “the Past in the Present” help to better understand Europe and Our World when faced with the profound and rapid changes brought about by the present situation? How do these impact on the relationships between individuals and groups – in the conference, and outside? And could studying these shed light on wider cultural and political processes – such as threats to democracy and leadership? Can the learning involved inform a more responsible citizenship?
The PCCA method developed from the experience of a pioneer group of German and Israeli psychoanalysts and others working directly in the presence of the other of the victim-perpetrator dyad, i.e. in the presence of the “enemy”. The Tavistock Group Relations conferences model was specially adapted to create a setting where experiences relating to the Holocaust, in the first instance, and later expanded to other societal conflicts and tensions in other contexts, which are ordinarily disowned, can be discovered and voiced, allowing them to be comprehended. Inner thoughts, feelings and fantasies about oneself, as a member of one (or more) of the groups in the conference, form the raw material that every individual brings to the work.
Application of this experience to each members’ personal, professional, social and political context is an important part of the learning process. These conferences are experiential events, where the work is done in groups. Most groups will have one or more consultants, who are partners in learning and whose role is not to lead the group but to support its working on the Primary Task. In this conference there is special interest in the fact that it is being held online rather than in the usual residential setting. The focus is on the dynamics of the group as a whole rather than the individuals within it. There is no conventional teaching and what each participant learns cannot be foreseen in advance since this depends on the nature of the individual’s participation in the ongoing process. This online conference has been specifically designed to accommodate PCCA’s specificity.
WHO MAY BENEFIT
This conference is for you if you are interested in or concerned/troubled by the situation described above and want to understand and learn about how this is played out at a personal, social and political level, both at the manifest level and beneath the surface. Such engaged, experiential learning may enable us to consider where our responsibilities, as individuals, citizens and professionals, lie in today’s world.
MEMBERSHIP IN THIS CONFERENCE
is open to professionals – psychoanalysts, psychologists, psychotherapists, consultants, coaches, public and private managers and in general to any concerned citizens – with or without previous experience of this kind of conference, but who wish to learn actively from one’s experience of belonging to and participating in the events on offer.
The conference starts on Thursday 8th April 2021 at 9.30 am (following registration at 9.00) and ends on Sunday 11th April 2021 at 13.45 pm.
The formal programme will comprise Plenaries, Conference Meetings, Small Study Groups, European and Our World Experiential Event and Review Groups. The detailed timetable of the events will be available at the beginning of the conference.
Participants in this conference will not have the usual opportunities for connecting with colleagues during informal gathering times (e.g. in the hotel lobby, drink breaks and mealtimes), and provision will therefore be made to open up some of the meeting spaces outside of the times of formal activities. During these times members will be able to gather informally if they wish.
Staff are not merely observers of the process, but partners in learning.
They are actively involved, using their own individual and national identity as an entry-point to the work.
A key part of the role is to observe and to think about what is going on to feed this back into the conference in order to promote learning from experience.
Director: Louisa Diana Brunner, PhD, lives and works in Milan as a Leadership & Family Business Consultant, Coach and Researcher. She is a Faculty Member of the Global Education Network and Fellow of the Family Firm Institute. She has served in different staff roles in Group Relations Conferences in Cyprus, England, Israel, Italy, Poland, USA and the Netherlands. She is a founding member of PCCA, an honorary member of Il Nodo Group, a member of ISPSO, OFEK and OPUS.
Associate Director: M. Fakhry Davids, M.Sc., TQAP, Clinical Psychologist and Psychoanalyst in full time practice in London; Supervising and Training Analyst of the British Psychoanalytic Society and Fellow of the Institute of Psychoanalysis; Honorary Senior Lecturer, Psychoanalysis Unit, University College London; Visiting Fellow, Centre for Trauma & Refugees, Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies, University of Essex; Member of the Tavistock Society of Psychotherapists, and Founding Board Member of PCCA.
Administrator: Antoaneta Mateeva, PhD, Professor in Clinical Social Work MA and BA programs, New Bulgarian University; Researcher at Know-How Center for Alternative Care for Children, NBU; Co-founder, Group Dynamic Trainer and Organisational Consultant Psychology of Groups Institute. Co-founder and Clinical Supervisor, Right to Childhood Foundation; Member of ISPSO and ÖAGG.
*The Conference Management will also take up consultancy roles
Leila Djemal MA, Organization Development Consultant and Executive Coach; Co-Director and Instructor, Touch OFEK Courses and Workshops; Graduate, William Alanson White Institute Organization Program, focusing on system psychodynamics, New York; Associate, A.K. Rice Institute for the Study of Social Systems, USA; Past Board Member, OFEK.
Shmuel Erlich, PhD, Training and Supervising Analyst and past-President, Israel Psychoanalytic Society; Psychoanalyst in private practice and Consultant to Organizations; Sigmund Freud Professor of Psychoanalysis (Emeritus), The Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Chair, IPA Institutional Issues Committee; Founding Member, OFEK, PCCA.
Bettina Jesberg M.D. (Psychiatry and Psychosomatics), a Practising Psychoanalyst; Member, Training and Supervising analyst of PaIB (Psychoanalytical Institute Berlin), DPG (German Psychoanalytical Society), IPA and DGPT. A supporting member of PCCA; (Co-) Founder several working groups on a National and European level (“Rencontre Franco-Allemande”; “Psychoanalytical Psychotherapy of Psychosis” and “Psychoanalysis in the Society in DPG; “Dealing with historical, political and social issues in the cure”).
Allan Shafer, MA (Clinical Psychology) D Litt et Phil , Clinical Psychologist, is a psychoanalytic psychotherapist in private practice in Melbourne, a socioanalytic organisation consultant and an international group relations consultant. He is a former President of Group Relations Australia, a member of the Victorian Association of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapists and was an Executive member of the Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Association of Australasia . He is a supporting member of PCCA. He has published numerous articles and chapters in socioanalytic and psychotherapy journals and books and was founding co-editor of the journal Sociooanalysis
Iwona Soltysinska MA, Jagiellonian University and Tavistock & Portman NHS Foundation Foundation Trust, Psychologist, Organisational Development Consultant, Psychodynamic therapist (KCP), Certified Coach (PCC, ICF); Member Hanna Segal Institute of Psychoanalytic Study; Supporting Member of PCCA; Consultant to experiential groups and Group Relations Conferences.
Mark Stein , PhD, is Professor of Leadership and Management at the University of Leicester, UK. Previously Mark has been a Senior Lecturer at Imperial College London, a Research Fellow at the London School of Economics and Brunel University, and a Researcher and Consultant at the Tavistock Institute. He has been on the staff of the Leicester Conference as well as a number of other group relations conferences over the years.
Nadine Tchelebi is a Senior Consultant in the field of Organizational Development at In Stability GmbH & Co. KG, Hanover, Germany, where she enjoys designing and leading change projects such as consulting to strategic and cultural development and has gained experiences in individual executive coaching and team coaching. She also conducts regular advanced group dynamics courses based on the Tavistock method of group relations.
Nadine holds a Ph.D. in psychoanalytic and systems-psychodynamic approaches to intergroup dynamics in organizations, has led international research projects in this field and has also published her work. She has gained an Executive Coaching qualification with which she has coached and supervised individual Executives and executive teams on a freelance basis internationally.
Before embarking on her consulting career, Nadine was a Senior Lecturer in Organization Studies at the Bristol Business School where she led the M.Sc. Programme “Leadership and Management” as well as the personal and professional development strands of the executive MBA. Alongside her academic career, she has designed, led and held diverse roles in more than ten international group dynamics trainings such as the Leicester Group Relations Conference. She has worked with Tavistock Consulting in the field of Consulting and Leading in Organizations and has been a Visiting Lecturer at INSEAD’s Executive Master in Consulting and Coaching for Change. Nadine is the Editor of the international academic journal Organizational and Social Dynamics and member of ISPSO (International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organizations), OPUS (Organization for Promoting Understanding of Society), PCCA (Partners in Confronting Collective Atrocities) and DGGO (German Society for Group and Organizational Dynamics).
Nadine has Arabic roots, speaks German, English and Spanish fluently, is a passionate rower and loves doing her pottery.
Dorothee C. von Tippelskirch-Eissing (Convener Associate Consultants) Dr. phil., Dipl. Psych., Psychoanalyst in private practice, Supervisor and Training Analyst; Former Chairperson of the Karl-Abraham-Institute, Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute (BPI) and Board Member German Psychoanalytic Association (DPV); Member of the International Psychoanalytic Association (IPA); since 2015 chairperson of Partners in Confronting Collective Atrocities (PCCA).
*Will be drawn from this list
The working language of the conference is English;
however in groups or situations where everyone speaks another language
that language could serve, for the time being, as a working language.
The working language of the conference is English;
however in groups or situations where everyone speaks another language that language could serve, for the time being, as a working language.
PARTNERS IN CONFRONTING COLLECTIVE ATROCITIES
works towards developing strategies to engage with the legacy of past atrocities that can contribute to opening up the possibility of a more hopeful future.
The aim of the organization is to work through the effects of the Holocaust and of past and present national and international conflicts that lead to destructive escalation, in the service of a better understanding among national groups worldwide.
PCCA was the recipient of the 2019 Sigourney award for its work in pioneering community-based psychoanalytic/social interventions to address the residual effects of trauma and atrocities, which was recognized as an outstanding contribution to psychoanalysis and its ability to reduce human suffering and understand human affairs.
In 2019, PCCA was The Winner of the Sigourney Award
The conference will take place online, using the Zoom platform. It is essential that members have a reliable internet connection to ensure their uninterrupted participation, and that they are reasonably familiar with using the device (computer, tablet etc.) they intend to use as their means of accessing the conference.
All relevant links will be sent to participants in due course, and be available from the Administrator during the conference if required.
THE LAST DAY OF REGISTRATION
Wednesday 31st March 2021
|Early Bird until Monday 8th March 2021||€ 300|
|Regular fee after Monday 8th March 2021||€ 350|
Countries, Students, Early
|Associate Consultants ( Five Nights )|
|Early Bird until
18th May 2020
|Single Occupancy||€ 1.950,00||€ 2.100,00|
|€ 1.000,00||€ 1.000,00|
Bursaries: A number of partial bursaries will be available on a ‘first come, first served basis’. Those interested should send in their application not later than the 1st March 2021 with their background information and supporting reasons to:
Brigitte Reusch email@example.com
|Members ( Four Nights )|
|Members||Early Bird until
18th May 2020
|Single Occupancy||€ 1.600,00||€ 1.750,00|
|Double Occupancy||€ 1.500,00||€ 1.600,00|
|€ 750,00||€ 750,00|
|Double Occupancy||€ 700,00||€ 700,00|