Scientific programme

Prior to the main congress of IAGP in Rovinj will be a two days Pre-Congress on August 31 and September 1.
The purpose of these two days is to think about and understand group processes from different theoretical approaches and practical methods. We consider the Pre-Congress as an opportunity to deepen issues from several perspectives.

We are inviting professionals from five continents and try to find an equal number of women and men to lead a pre-congress workshop. We will offer also invitations to senior colleagues to present in partnership with young professionals to create new paths of expertise and sharing. This collateral working and learning can be quite interesting and may lead us to new knowledge, insights and networks.

We hope to create a wide variety of topics for you to choose.

Maria van Noort
Marcia Almeida Battista


2nd of September – 5th of September 2015

The focus of the Congress is to promote dialogue among the participants, and awareness of the world that we live in, as well as broadening scientific knowledge. The Congress format of interactive small and median groups, workshops, symposiums, coffee breaks, end of the day Large Groups, open Groups in the City and social events and activities, provides an opportunity for participants to communicate with and learn about and connect and share with each other.
Sessions will be either in English, Italian or Spanish.

Chair: Elisabeth Rohr
Vice Chairs: EinarGudmundsson and Enrique Stola
Pre-Congress: Maria van Noort and Marcia Almeida Baptista
Advisor: Esther Stone


Prof. Dr. David Becker

David Becker is a trained psychologist, PhD and Professor of Psychology at the Sigmund Freud Private University (SFU) in Berlin. 

After having worked for many years with victims of political persecution in Latinamerica he returned to Germany in 1999 to work at the International Academy Berlin for Innovative Education, Psychology and Economy (INA), where he was a co-founder of the Office for Psychosocial Issues (OPSI), which he directs to the present day and through which he works as a consultant for international organizations in reference to psychosocial projects in regions of conflict and war (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Tajikistan, Colombia, Nepal and Palestine). His focus has been on enhancing contextualized and conflict sensitive approaches to psychosocial work.

David Becker has published extensively on issues of trauma, human rights, and dealing with the past. In these publications he is mostly concerned with the decontextualization of trauma, arguing that the medical formular of PTSD tends to forget the political context of man-made disaster, which produces trauma. He has co-authored the toolkit “Gender, Conflict Transformation and the Psychosocial Approach”, as well as the evaluation and self-evaluation tool "Psychosocial Conflict Analysis".

Recently he has been directing the project “Kicking the Ball and Taking Care – Psychosocial Help in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank”. The project combines sports activities with easy access to mental health for  Palestinian children in UNRWA schools. The project furthermore focuses on developing skills and structures of professional coaching and supervision for mental health professionals, teachers and social workers, which themselves are often just as traumatized as their clients.

Dr. Maria Rita Kehl

Born in 1951 in Campinas, São Paulo, Maria Rita Kehl is a psychoanalyst, a writer of novels and of poetry and a politically engaged professional. She began her writing career early as the editor of the Jornal Movimento, an alternative press journal published during Brazil’s military dictatorship. When she dared to praise the political strategies of future president Lula, she lost her job, but this did not convince her to deny the importance of political engagement in her life.

She has been treating patients in her private practice since 1981, in addition to writing various books, essays, short stories, poetry, and collaborating constantly with a number of communication channels. In 2010, she won the Human Rights Award in the category for Media and Human Rights given by the Brazilian Federal Government. In that same year one of her latest books about experiences and reflections on her work with patients with depression (see below), won the Jabuti Award for Best Non-Fiction Book, and first place in the category Education, Psychology and Psychoanalysis.

When the president of Brazil, Vilma Rousseff asked her to join the Brazilian Truth Commission as one of its seven members, she only explained her decision by saying: ‘I liked your book’.

This is an Excerpt – O tempo e o cão: A atualidade das depressões
The path of psychoanalytical comprehension always begins with clinical investigation, where formations of the unconscious are expressed in the singularities of each subject; but the clinical experience can also … contribute to clarifying the suffering that is expressed through the symptoms of social life.  … In the office, we treat the depressed one by one, based on the tenets of psychoanalysis. From that, maybe we can also listen to what they can teach us about the contemporary forms of discomfort, a phenomenon that neither they – nor any other talking being – are excluded from.

Dr. Dolores Britvić

Born in Split, graduate and postgraduate study in Medicine completed at School of Medicine,University of Zagreb. Psychiatrist with subspecialisation in psychotherapy and forensic psychiatry, work at the University Hospital of Split. Master degree in Forensic psychiatry, PhD in Group psychotherapy.

Trained psychotherapist, group analyst with the educator degree. Last twenty years, has been working with psychological trauma and published many research about group psychotherapy of patients suffering from posttraumatic spectrum disorders. 

Since 2003.  director of Regional Centre for psychotrauma Split. Head of the Department for Psychological Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Split since 2008.
Since 2010. vice president of the Croatian Psychiatric Association and member of the board of the Croatian Institute of Group Analysis.

Special fields of interest are psychotherapy, psychotraumatology and forensic psychiatry.  
Published several book's chapters and many scientific original papers.

Khader M. Rasras

Khader M. Rasras is a clinical psychologist and currently the executive director of the "Treatment and Rehabilitation Center for the Victims of Torture" in Ramallah/Westbank and a Human Rights Activist. 
He studied psychology in the Philippines, in Great Britain and later also Human Rights/Humanitarian Law at Birzeit University in the Westbank. He gained his first clinical experiences at Bethlehem Psychiatric Hospital, where he later was assigned as the chairperson of the psychology department. As group psychotherapist he has been working with groups of victims of torture, but also with bereaved families, children and adults with different psychiatric disorders. He has published several articles about group therapy, bereavement, violence and mental health and has edited a book about crises intervention protocols.  Besides his clinical engagement, he teaches different psychology topics at Birzeit University. His family took refuge in the West Bank in 1948.