In June of this year, Family Institute president William Pinsof, PhD, ABPP, and Jacob Goldsmith, PhD, staff therapist at the Institute and assistant clinical director for the Dan J. Epstein Family Foundation Center for Psychotherapy Change, traveled to Denmark to participate in a conference. We caught up with Dr. Goldsmith and asked him to tell TFI Talks about his experiences.
TFI TALKS: Tell us a little about the conference itself and what you and Dr. Pinsof presented.
JG: I recently attended the Society for Psychotherapy Research (SPR) Conference in Copenhagen. SPR is a great organization with a focus on all sorts of psychotherapy research, and presenting there allows us to reach a diverse audience of psychotherapy researchers. When SPR meets in Europe it is well attended by academics and clinicians who might not otherwise make it to the conference. As a result, it is an opportunity for us to present to a new and wider audience.
Our panel presentation included brief talks by William Pinsof, myself, and Terje Tilden, our colleague from Modum Bad hospital in Norway. We each addressed different aspects of research using The STIC. I focused on my recent findings about the client-therapist relationship, or psychotherapy alliance. I am conducting ongoing analyses to explore what happens when client-therapist relationships have sudden problems. In this presentation I discussed the relative prevalence with which such problems occur in individual, couple, and family therapy.
TFI TALKS: How do you think the Epstein Center and the STIC are generally received in the field at large?
JG: On the whole, I find that our work is very well received by the field at large. After our presentation we received several inquiries about using The STIC either for research or within a clinic. I think many clinicians and researchers ‘get’ the idea of the STIC at a basic level right away. But what’s really fun is watching people realize just how powerful the STIC can be as a clinical tool. By the end of the presentation people tend to come up and talk about how The STIC could impact their own work.
TFI TALKS: What impact do you think these sorts of presentations have on the STIC and the Institute at large?
JG: First, these presentations raise the profile of the STIC. A broad research audience gets to hear about what we are doing, and The STIC becomes a bigger part of the ongoing discussion about how to improve psychotherapy. Perhaps even more importantly, we often make connections with researchers and students who wish to use The STIC – our goal, of course, is to parlay these initial meetings into partnerships, to continue the validation and dissemination of The STIC, and to cement its use worldwide.
By raising our research profile, and garnering attention for the STIC, our hope is to raise the profile of The Family Institute as a whole. Our talks are well attended, and many people get to hear about the work that we are doing, as researchers and clinicians. I believe this exposure will increase the likelihood that when therapists around the world think about referring a client in Chicago, they will think about The Family Institute.