Foundation Training – London 2020

Open Dialogue – Foundation Training


London, UK
for NHS and other mental health teams, independent practitioners and peers
Organised by


PLEASE NOTE: This training can also be run on an in-house basis in the NHS and other mental health services nationally and internationally. For further details, please contact us.

As is the case in Western Lapland, Open Dialogue foundation trainings are integral to any Open Dialogue service, helping staff to become familiar enough with the philosophy and practice of Open Dialogue, such that they can start to facilitate network meetings in their service.

The Open Dialogue UK foundation programme is largely based on a programme developed over the past 10 years by Volkmar Aderhold and others, and is now the most widely used Open Dialogue foundation training internationally. It is based on extensive clinical experience and several visits to study the Open Dialogue service in Western Lapland, and has been refined over the years, based on the experience of what has seemed most effective, having been run extensively in Germany, and also in Switzerland, the US, the UK and Australia. It provides a thorough grounding in the practice of facilitating Open Dialogue network meetings.

This programme was at the heart of the development of the Parachute Project in New York City, along with Intentional Peer Support training programmes. Clinicians and peers working in mobile crisis teams and respite centres across four of New York’s boroughs undertook the training, led by Volkmar and Petra Hohn, as part of a systematic redevelopment of community mental health services in the city. It has been run four times in the UK, including teams from several NHS Trusts, as well as those working in public services internationally, independent practitioners and peers. In 2019 it was run on an in-house basis for South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. It was also the training chosen for the Queensland Peer Supported Open Dialogue project.

We are delighted to welcome back Volkmar Aderhold and Petra Hohn to lead this foundation training in London with Nick Putman. Volkmar and Petra are very experienced practitioners and trainers, and have now participated in several trainings with us. Further information about them can be found below.

The deadline for applications to this training programme is 19 June 2020.

Apply for Training

To apply for the training as a group please click here.

To apply for the training as an individual please click here.

19 June 2020

 Dates for Training

16-19 Sept 2020
25-28 Nov 2020
17-20 Feb 2021
21-24 Apr 2021
16-19 June 2021

Training Fees

£3250 per person

or 4 installments of £895


Please telephone
+44 20 8133 3441
or contact us by clicking here.

The training programme will take place in London and will consist of 20 days over the course of 2019, divided into 5 blocks of 4 days. The training days will consist of a mixture of presentations on theory and practice, large group discussions, and role plays, where trainees will gain considerable experience of practicing the keys elements of dialogical work. Theory and practice are well integrated such that learning is embodied as well as conceptual. Reading will be provided to complement the training days. Among the topics covered are the following:
  • The 7 principles of Open Dialogue practice
  • Reflecting and reflecting teams
  • The facilitation of network meetings
  • The elements of dialogic practice
  • Circular and anticipatory questions
  • Family of origin work
  • Working in crisis situations
  • Working with people experiencing psychosis
  • Peers in network meetings
  • Dealing with fears about network meetings
  • Working with risk

Training Team

Volkmar is a Psychiatrist and Psychotherapist with a Doctorate in Human Medicine, and is internationally recognised for his contributions to the field of psychiatry. His expertise has been developed through lengthy experience as a clinical director, active researcher, lecturer and publisher. He worked as a senior consultant in the University Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy in Hamburg for 10 years. There his accomplishments included working on a new project for people with difficult to treat psychosis including individual and group therapy practices. He was among the first to be involved with voice hearers in Germany. Together with engaged teams he also started to implement more and more elements of the Need Adapted Treatment Model and Open Dialogue practices on an acute ward for people with psychotic experiences.

Volkmar led the first project in Germany to implement the Need Adapted Treatment Model and Open Dialogue practices. Over the past 8 years he has developed a variety of in-house training programmes for the practice of Open Dialogue for multi-professional teams, often including peers (in total more than 30 training programmes). He has run these trainings along with many other senior therapists across 17 districts in Germany, and variations on the programme have been run in the USA (The Parachute Project), Switzerland and Poland.

Volkmar is inspired to develop humane approaches to people experiencing severe distress, following the principles of the peer and recovery movement, within an integrated practice. He writes:

“I love to run these trainings, to see the impact on professionals, and their capacity to create a frame for a process in which clients can overcome their sense of alienation, as well as find their individuality and their own meaning for extreme experiences. The mutual process of reconciliation and individualisation can be astounding while the actual dialogical practice is so subtle. I greatly appreciate the values that are at the heart of this approach, such as respect, growth, and a more socially inclusive way of life.”