Bringing the World to Sydney : The Bid

The 6th World Congress for Psychotherapy will be held in Sydney in August 2011. At the 4th World Congress held in Buenos Aires in August, 2005 this bid won over its competitor and Sydney was announced as the venue for this major event. It will be the largest conference of its kind ever held in Australasia. The bid was a joint effort between Australia and New Zealand and the expectation is that it will be preceded by an Asia-Pacific congress to be held in New Zealand in 2010. The warm response made by many psychotherapy organizations and individual practitioners in support of the bid was a critical aspect underpinning its success. The organizing committee would like to thank all concerned for the support that proved so crucial to the outcome.

This occasion presents psychotherapy in this region with a unique opportunity to enter into dialogue with leaders in the field and to bring the need for effective psychotherapy services to the attention of the community here and elsewhere. It is anticipated that it will also be an impetus towards cohesion in the psychotherapeutic community that will allow growth and enhance standards within the profession. The congress will foster the development of ideas in the profession and will facilitate the growth of community awareness about the role of psychotherapy in relation to mental distress and personal growth. The development of psychotherapy as a profession cannot be separated from the development of a community culture that supports personal growth.

The host organization, the World Council for Psychotherapy (WCP), is dedicated to recognition of psychotherapy as an independent discipline with its own body of knowledge based in the observation and understanding of human experience from the perspective of the psychotherapeutic relationship. WCP has a policy of including and involving the many different schools and forms of psychotherapy. As such the congress provides practitioners with a unique opportunity for cross-fertilization of ideas between colleagues of diverse backgrounds and orientations.

The theme for the conference is “World Dreaming”, a phrase that captures something of the historical origins of psychotherapy and the cultural origins of Australian peoples.

The theme also highlights cultural history and meanings within Aotearoa-New Zealand.

Moreover the emphasis on the human world of dreaming rather than the inanimate world of objects will provide a space for beginning to understand difference and move towards conciliation. In the minds of committee members, a diversity of “dreamings” is envisaged: infant dreaming, first people dreaming, trauma dreaming, healing dreaming, therapist dreaming, patient dreaming, brain dreaming, spirit dreaming, group dreaming, etc. Let our imaginations extend this list and start having the dreaming towards global understanding, at “World Dreaming”, Sydney, August, 2011.

Anthony Korner,
Chairman, Organizing Committee, WCP, Sydney 2011.
On behalf of the Organizing Committee : Dr Margot Schofield, PACFA; Dr Louise Newman, RANZCP; Dr Phil Graham, ANZAP; Ms Sophie Holmes, PACFA, Victorian FPA; A. Roy Bowden, NZAP, New Zealand, Ms Margaret Morice, NZAP, New Zealand, Mr Timothy Johnson-Newell, PACFA


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