Report from the Candidates’ Committee

By Hilary Offman (Canada) and María José Mezzera (Chile)
Co-chairs, Candidates’ Committee

The Candidates’ Committee is please to announce a panel sponsored by IARPP’s Candidates’ Committee to take place during the 14th International Conference in Sydney, Australia.

Candidates and early-career analysts were invited to submit proposals for this panel discussion, developed by the Candidates’ Committee, to be held as part of IARPP’s upcoming conference in Sydney, May 25-28, 2017. In an effort to encourage broader participation in the conference by those who have more recently joined our profession, our panel will feature several presenters who are either currently in psychoanalytic training or are within five years of completing their training. The panelists will be followed by a respondent and a senior analyst yet to be named. As well, the Candidates’ Committee is pleased to announce the availability of financial awards for presenters, to offset the travel costs and to encourage participation.

In its constructivist leanings, relational psychoanalysis invites us to see theory not as offering up clinical certainty, but as an interpretive/hermeneutic pursuit, ever evolving and inflected by human subjectivity and intersubjectivity. We are interested in how that fundamental shift has affected psychoanalytic training and how candidate clinicians think about and cope with the added complexity this perspective invites.

For this panel, we have chosen four very interesting papers, written by candidates from different parts of the world, on the subject of negotiating the relationship between theory and practice. How does one hold the complexity a relational psychoanalytic perspective necessarily entails? How do candidates think about and work with the relationship between theory and clinical practice? In a field that has developed over time from a singular voice into a whole chorus of perspectives, how does one center oneself and stay grounded?


IARPP and the members of the Candidates’ Committee are also pleased to announce an upcoming webinar for candidates as well as early career psychoanalysts and relationally trained psychotherapists, entitled “Thinking, Feeling and Relating.” It will be led by Sandra Buechler, PhD (USA), and will take place from January 16 to February 5, 2017.

Readings will include chapters from Buechler’s book, Making a Difference in Patients’ Lives: Emotional Experience in the Therapeutic Setting (Routledge, 2008). Buechler describes her aim and focus in the colloquium as follows:

“In these three chapters, I describe some patterns of thinking, feeling, and relating that recur in my own clinical work. Together, they form a template. Of course, analytic thought, empathic immersion, and interpersonal relating are inseparable. I discuss them separately for the sake of clarity. My aim is to stimulate communication about various ways to conceive of the analytic task, and to foster discussion of how analytic capacity can be nurtured in training.”

This webinar is designed specifically and only for candidates and early career psychoanalysts and relationally trained psychotherapists, with online registration beginning on January 2nd. Webinars sponsored by the Candidates’ Committee provide opportunities to learn from some of the most accomplished members of our community, as well as a chance to interact with an international group of peers.

This webinar is limited to 75 participants. Admission is open to candidates and those who have completed analytic training within the past five years. We particularly welcome those for whom English is not a first language.

IARPP webinars are free for first-time registrants. For those who have participated in any of our prior web seminars, a nominal registration fee of $10 will be charged, payable by credit card.

Sandra Buechler, PhD, is a Training and Supervising analyst and graduate of the William Alanson White Institute. Her book Clinical Values: Emotions that Guide Psychoanalytic Treatment (Analytic Press, 2004), examines hope, courage, and other values. In her book Making a Difference in Patients’ Lives: Emotional Experience in the Therapeutic Setting (Routledge, 2008), Buechler discusses therapeutic process. Her book Still Practicing: The Heartaches and Joys of a Clinical Career (Routledge, 2012) examines clinicians’ shame, sorrow, and resilience. And in her most recent book, Understanding and Treating Patients in Clinical Psychoanalysis: Lessons from Literature (Routledge, 2015), Buechler uses short stories to illuminate coping styles.

Hope to meet you all in Sydney and online in the webinar group!

Sincerely yours,

The members of the IARPP candidates committee:

Hilary Offman, Co-chair (Canada)
María José Mezzera, Co-chair (Chile)
Kim Bernstein (United States)
Gadit Orian (Israel)
Sandra Toribio (Spain)
Fabia Banella (Italy)
Erik Fagerberg (Sweden)
Leena Chaugule (Australia)
Margaret Black Mitchell (IARRP Board Liaison)

Hillary Offman Co-Chair Candidates Committee

Hilary Offman, MD, FRCPC
121 Balmoral Avenue
Toronto, Ontario M4V 1J5
Email Hilary Offman





mezzeraphoto0216wwwMaría José Mezzera, PhD
Napoleón 3565, of. 910
Las Condes, Santiago
Email María José Mezzera