IPA Webinar Covid-19 series: Trauma, fear, and panic in times of Covid-19

Friday 15 May 2020



The Covid-19 pandemic set off a variety of far reaching, deeply disruptive processes, sometimes leading to and culminating in fears, panic and traumatic responses. Its impingement on the psychoanalytic setting and clinical practice has been widely noted and discussed. This webinar will focus on another perspective: the dynamics of its group and social impact. We address the nature of trauma, especially communal trauma, the contagious and debilitating spread of fear, and the significance of the unfolding stages of social response patterns to Covid19.
Ahead of this webinar, we recommend and encourage you to read each of the panellist’s papers, which are available via the attachments below. These papers will also be available to download during the webinar.

Moderator: Harriet Wolfe 
Harriet Wolfe, M.D., is President-elect of the IPA, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine, and Training and Supervising Analyst at the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis. She has a private practice of psychoanalysis, psychoanalytic psychotherapy, and couples and family therapy in San Francisco.

Panellists: Shmuel Erlich, Zachary Green, Mario Perini

Shmuel Erlich is a Training and Supervising Analyst and former President of the Israel Psychoanalytic Society. He was Sigmund Freud Professor of Psychoanalysis and Director of the Sigmund Freud Center at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has chaired the IPA Education Committee, served four terms as European Representative on the IPA Board, is currently Chair of the IPA Institutional Issues Committee. He is Founding Member of OFEK: the Israel Association for the Study of Group and Organizational Processes, and of PCCA: Partners in Confronting Collective Atrocities. He has published on adolescence, on experiential dimensions of object relations, and on group and organizational dynamics, as well as two books: The Couch in the Marketplace, and Fed with Tears, Poisoned with Milk. He is in private practice in Tel Aviv. Download paper

Mario Perini, MD, co-founder of the Associazione IL NODO Group (Turin, Italy), is a psychiatrist and a psychoanalyst, a member of SPI (Italian Psychoanalytic Society), IPA and ISPSO. He has been working since many years as a psychotherapist, as a Balint group leader, as an organizational consultant and as a professor of group and organizational dynamics at the Turin University Department of Psychology. For Halina Brunning’s book “Psychoanalytical reflections on a Changing World” (2012) he wrote the chapter “Panic and pandemics”. Download paper


Zachary Green is a professor of practice in Leadership Studies at University of San Diego Non-profit Institute. He is also co-founder and director of Group Relations International. Zachary has three decades of experience studying, coaching and consulting to unconscious and systemic dynamics of global organizations, most notably through the World Bank and IMAGO Global Grassroots. Early in the pandemic he co-authored an article titled “Mapping the Developmental Stages of Contagion Response.” Download paper