The Open Dialogue approach

"The Open Dialogue approach is both a philosophical/theoretical approach to people experiencing a mental health crisis and their families/networks, and a system of care, developed in Western Lapland in Finland over the last 25-30 years".

The emphasis is on setting up a dialogue with not just the person in crisis, but also that person's social network, and all within 24 hours. As a result of this approach, it has been shown that there is often a reduced need for both medication and hospitalisation.

You can find out more by clicking on the following links to websites and documents:

Open Dialogue UK

Open Dialogue - an international community

Institute for Dialogic Practice - the United States based Institute is a training facility for Open Dialogue with useful information on the website.

Articles & videos on Open Dialogue

Dr Jaakko Seikkula is a Professor of Psychotherapy at Jyväskylä University in Finland.

He has written extensively on the Open Dialogue approach, having been closely involved with its practice in Western Finland for over twenty years. You can link to some of his articles here - some are co-authored.

April 2014 OPEN DIALOGUE: the complete film now online for viewing (alternative healing for psychosis).  

Becoming Dialogical: Psychotherapy or a Way of Life? by Jaakko Seikkula

Healing Elements of Therapeutic Conversation: Dialogue as an Embodiment of Love by Jaakko Seikkula and David Trimble

Making sense of multi-actor dialogues in family therapy and network meetings by Jaakko Seikkula, Aarno Laitila and Peter Rober

The Open Dialogue approach to Acute Psychosis: it's Poetics & Micropolitics by Jaakko Seikkula and Mary E Olson

You can watch a video of Jaakko Seikkula speaking about the Open Dialogue approach here.

Daniel Mackler is a filmmaker and former New York City psychotherapist who has made several videos on the Open Dialogue approach.

You can watch some of his interviews, and trailers for the longer films, on his YouTube channel here. The full Open Dialogue film is now available here. Daniel has also written a 5 year follow up essay on the Finnish Open Dialogue which you can read here.

Developing Open Dialogue
DOD is a not-for-profit organisation based in Yorkshire, England, which aims to keep interested people up to date with developments in Open Dialogue approaches across the UK and elsewhere, from service implementations, to research projects and training opportunities. Read about other Open Dialogue resources on the organisation's website.

The University of Massachusetts Medical School
The University of Massachusetts Medical School is working with Jaakko Seikkula to implement the Open Dialogue approach in the United States. You can read more about this work here.

Open Dialogue - now being introduced to the UK

A group of dedicated mental health professionals is now introducing Open Dialogue to the UK. Clinicians and local peer volunteers from four NHS mental health trusts have commenced training, and a trial to compare it to current practice started in 2016.

The first Foundation Training in the Open Dialogue approach commenced in the UK in 2016. It is for NHS teams, peers and independent practitioners, and takes place in London over a period of 20 days, spaced in blocks throughout a year. One of the trainers is Mia Kurtti, who also trains on the Foundation Programme in West Lapland. 

Find out more about training on the Open Dialogue UK website.

There are videos of the March 2016 Open Dialogue UK Conference on the Mad in America blog.

You can find out more on a Guardian webpage here about the first national Peer-Supported Open Dialogue conference which took place in London in March 2015.

Tom Stockmann, a psychiatrist working in London, attended training in Peer-Supported Open Dialogue in 2015. You can read his blog about his experiences here and a separate post he wrote for the Mad in America website here.

You can read issues of the UK Peer Supported Open Dialogue bulletin here.

Nottingham Open Dialogue Group

This group produced a number of presentations and documents in August/September 2013 for a workshop on Open Dialogue at a conference called Psychiatry Beyond the Current Paradigm organised by the Critical Psychiatry Network and Asylum Associates.

Nottingham Open Dialogue presentation

Nottingham Open Dialogue principles

Nottingham Open Dialogue Facebook page here.

You can read more about the Nottingham Open Dialogue workshop here.

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Newtown

Looking at Me - Mosaic Workshop

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Mid Powys Mind, Llandrindod Wells

Walk around Gregynog Hall

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My Memories Dementia Carers Support Group, Newtown

Anxiety Cafe (Brecon)

Tuesday 27 June 2017

Brecon & District Mind

LGBTQ+

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Peer Support & Advice in a no-pressure Support Group (Llandrindod Wells)

Asylum: Action and Reaction conference

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A conference in Manchester to celebrate 30 years of Asylum magazine

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Llandrindod Wells

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Mid Powys Mind, Llandrindod Wells

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My Memories Dementia Carers Support Group, Newtown

Looking at Me - Mosaic Workshop

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Centre Celf, Llandrindod Wells

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Brecon & District Mind

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Llanfair Caereinion

My Dreams of Being - Supporting people to live well with Dementia

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Brecon

Mental Health Awareness Course

Wednesday 5 July 2017

Mid Powys Mind

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Wednesday 5 July 2017

Mid Powys Mind, Llandrindod Wells

Compassionate Communication Training

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Llandrindod Wells

Looking at Me - Mosaic Workshop

Thursday 6 July 2017

Centre Celf, Llandrindod Wells

Experiencing Dementia Training

Thursday 6 July 2017

Newtown

Embracing Individuality

Friday 7 July 2017

A group for adults on the autistic spectrum or those who think they might be (Llandrindod Wells)

Singing Group in Brecon

Monday 10 July 2017

Dementia Matters in Powys

Together for Mental Health

Wednesday 12 July 2017

A Cymorth Cymru event bringing together service users, providers and academics to consider the difference we can all make to mental health.

Mental Capacity Act & Best Interest Training

Thursday 13 July 2017

Llandrindod Wells

Looking at Me - Mosaic Workshop

Thursday 13 July 2017

Centre Celf, Llandrindod Wells

DoLS Legal Update Annual Refresher Training

Friday 14 July 2017

Brecon

Celf-Able Art Group

Tuesday 18 July 2017

Newtown

Life Story Dementia Training

Tuesday 18 July 2017

Brecon

Looking at Me - Mosaic Workshop

Thursday 20 July 2017

Centre Celf, Llandrindod Wells

Celf-Able Art Group

Monday 24 July 2017

Llanfair Caereinion

Montgomeryshire Local Committee

Tuesday 25 July 2017

Powys Community Health Council

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Wednesday 26 July 2017

Helping Fellow Veterans in Wales to access Mental Health Support

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Thursday 27 July 2017

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Powys Community Health Council

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Friday 11 August 2017

A group for adults on the autistic spectrum or those who think they might be (Llandrindod Wells)

Celf-Able Art Group

Monday 14 August 2017

Llanfair Caereinion

Singing Group in Brecon

Monday 14 August 2017

Dementia Matters in Powys

Executive Committee

Tuesday 22 August 2017

Powys Community Health Council

ISPS Conference in Liverpool (30th August - 3rd September)

Wednesday 30 August 2017

International Society for Psychological & Social Approaches to Psychosis (ISPS)

Embracing Individuality

Thursday 31 August 2017

A group for adults on the autistic spectrum or those who think they might be (Rhayader)

Celf-Able Art Group

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Llanfair Caereinion

Beat It Percussion - Drumming Together (4th, 11th, 18th, 25th Sept)

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Dementia Friendly Music Making Sessions, Brecon

Mental Health Summer Recovery Camp (7th-12th Sept)

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Llansilin, Oswestry

Singing Group in Brecon

Monday 11 September 2017

Dementia Matters in Powys

Full Council Meeting

Tuesday 12 September 2017

Powys Community Health Council

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Thursday 28 September 2017

Brecon

Beat It Percussion - Drumming Together

Monday 2 October 2017

Dementia Friendly Music Making Session, Brecon

Life Story Dementia Training

Thursday 5 October 2017

Newtown

Challenging Behaviour in Dementia Training

Tuesday 10 October 2017

Brecon

Mental Health Awareness Training (half day)

Tuesday 17 October 2017

Brecon

DoLS Legal Update Annual Refresher Training

Thursday 19 October 2017

Newtown

Montgomeryshire Local Committee

Tuesday 24 October 2017

Powys Community Health Council

Radnorshire & Brecknock Local Committee

Thursday 9 November 2017

Powys Community Health Council

ACTivate Your Life Classes - Mondays (4 weeks)

Monday 20 November 2017

Powys Teaching Health Board, Brecon

Executive Committee

Tuesday 28 November 2017

Powys Community Health Council

ACTivate Your Life Classes - Mondays

Monday 4 December 2017

Powys Teaching Health Board, Brecon

ACTivate Your Life Classes - Mondays

Monday 11 December 2017

Powys Teaching Health Board, Brecon

Mental Capacity Act & Best Interest Training

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Newtown

Full Council Meeting

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Powys Community Health Council

Montgomeryshire Local Committee

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Powys Community Health Council

Challenging Behaviour in Dementia Training

Tuesday 6 February 2018

Llandrindod Wells

Radnorshire & Brecknock Local Committee

Thursday 8 February 2018

Powys Community Health Council

Executive Committee

Tuesday 27 February 2018

Powys Community Health Council

Dementia Awareness Training

Thursday 8 March 2018

Llandrindod Wells

Full Council Meeting

Tuesday 13 March 2018

Powys Community Health Council

Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) Awareness Training

Wednesday 21 March 2018

Llandrindod Wells
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