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Theme Conferences

In the course of its existence OFEK has developed various applications and uses of the group relations conference model for the purpose of understanding and processing social trauma, inter-group conflicts and other social issues. These applications are based on the assumption that this method of work – reflection leading to new thoughts and insights – promotes the ability to work with painful and anxiety-provoking issues, such as violence, trauma and conflict.

In these conferences the chosen theme is at the center of consciousness and influences what happens both to members and staff. The design of the conference, as well as the consultation offered by the staff, derives from this theme. Issues that are usually at the center of attention in group relations conferences, such as questions of authority and leadership, implicitly influence the understanding of the conference processes but are not necessarily explicitly discussed.

Examples of Theme Conferences:

Sexual Violence and Abuse in Family and in Society

Litvin, I. & Bonwitt, G. Sexual abuse – Application and adaptation of basic Group Relations concepts, technique and culture to a specific social issue. In: Bruner, L. D., Nutkevitch, A., Sher, M. (eds.) (2006) Group Relations Conferences – Reviewing and Exploring Theory, Design, Role-Taking and Application. London: Karnac Books. 47-60.

Role and Fantasy on the Road 

Oren Kaplan, Silvia Silberman, Rinat Alon and Yoram Galli (2007) Psychoanalytical Aspects of Driving Behaviour: Role and Fantasy On the Road. Organizational and Social Dynamics 7 (2),172-192

Jewish Identity, Belonging and Leadership – Israel and the Diaspora

Yoram Lahav (2006) Conscious and Unconscious Processes in the Exploration of Jewish Identity Kav OFEK 7, November 2006 (in Hebrew).


Dilemmas in the Public Health Care System – on Role, Responsibility and Authority in an Era of Transformation

This conference is meant to offer professionals in the health care system an opportunity to explore, reflect and experience conscious and unconscious processes that occur in the system and in its social environment.