envelope Contact phone: +43-1-2706553






Does psychodynamic thinking still have any significance for the treatment of pedophilia?

Peer Briken 

 

In the current debate on the aetiology of paedophilia, biological, especially neuroscientifically based factors, are being strongly promoted. Paedophilia is constructed as a sexual orientation that should be accepted within the framework of cognitive-behavioral therapies, which are considered as evidence-based in the field. The socially accepted goal of a therapy is to avoid sexual abuse of children through self-control. An understanding and working through of the underlying dynamics and a post-maturation or even a change of paedophile interests through therapy is not a goal or at most of secondary importance. When it comes to the significance of possible real traumatic experiences, the publications mention sexual abuse that pedophilic men have experienced themselves, but question or controversially discuss the significance for the aetiology of paedophilic symptoms. This lecture examines paedophilic sexual interest and paedosexual actions on the basis of the concept of compulsion to repeat and on the background of traumatic experiences of paedophilic men. It is important to point out that it should not be assumed at the same time that the experience of sexual abuse increases the risk of becoming an abuser or of developing a paedophilic disorder. Theoretical considerations are illustrated with clinical case material and their significance for therapy is presented.

 

Peer Briken, MD FECSM is a full Professor for Sex Research, Sexual Medicine, and Forensic Psychiatry and Director of the institute of the same name at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf. From 2010 to September 2016 he was the president of the German Society for Sexual Research (DGfS) and from 2012 to September 2016 vice president of the International Association for the Treatment of Sexual Offenders (IATSO). He is editor of the Zeitschrift für Sexualforschung and authored or co-authored more than 300 scientific paper. Since January 2016, Briken has been a member of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in Germany. 

Event-related potentials (ERPs) as a research method for investigating neuropsychiatric disorders

Timm Rosburg

 

Recordings of event-related potentials (ERPs) and other electrophysiological markers are an established method for studying biological correlates of neuropsychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia or posttraumatic stress disorder, in order to disclose what functional cascades might contribute to these disorders. Knowledge about such cascades might also provide avenues for new medical treatment strategies. In the field of forensic psychiatry, these electrophysiological techniques are used to a still much lesser extent. This might be due to some preponderance of psychosocial disorder models in this area but maybe also due to some lack of knowledge about these neurophysiological research techniques. In my workshop, I inform about the technique of ERPs and other electrophysiological methods and present some selected clinical ERP findings. The workshop is suited for junior and senior academics who are curious to learn about the background, strengths, limitations, and perspective of this research method. The workshop complements a plenary lecture on ERP findings on paraphilia, personality, and concealed knowledge. 

 

Timm Rosburg, Ph.D. is a research psychologist with a vast experience in the field of clinical neurophysiology. He authored more than 70 peer-reviewed publications on this topic. Timm was until recently affiliated with the Forensic Department of the University Psychiatric Clinics Basel (Switzerland) and now works at the Department of Clinical Research of the University of Basel. 

Recent developments in the assessment of pedohebephilic interest

Alexander F. Schmidt

 

Empirical problems in the assessment of categorical pedophilic disorder diagnoses will be outlined. Based on the distinction between absolute sexual interests and relative sexual preferences, it will be argued for the advantage of using relative differences between sexual interests in children and adults in (forensic and clinical) assessment. It follows an overview of the (dis)advantages of different measurement approaches of pedophilic preferences. It will be focused on indirect latency-based measures such as the Explicit and Implicit Sexual Interest Profile (EISIP, Banse, Schmidt & Clarbour, 2010) and more recent crime scene behavioral scores as indicators of pedophilic interest in populations of individuals who have sexually offended. Implications from recent studies on test-retest reliabilities as well as taxometric analyses utilizing direct and indirect sexual interest measures in non-offending men with and without sexual interests in children will be discussed. The presentation closes with recommendations for improved (applied) diagnostic practice.

 

Alexander F. Schmidt is a Senior Lecturer at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany where he teaches forensic psychology. He has an approbation as cognitive-behavioral psychotherapist for adults. His research interests include sexual behavior and criminal psychology with a focus on indirect latency-based measures of (paraphilic and atypical) sexual interests and how these are linked to sexual offending. Alexander has published extensively on sexual offending against children and forensic evaluations of sexual offenders as well as other forensic expert assessments. He serves as an expert witness on paraphilic interests in family and criminal court proceedings and has been working with offender and non-offending psychotherapy populations. He serves as an associate editor of the Archives of Sexual Behavior and is member on several editorial boards. He has been awarded with the Young Scientist's Best Dissertation Award from the Legal Psychology Division in the German Psychological Society (DGPs) for his PhD thesis on criminal responsibility assessment.

What is on your mind? Tapping into cognition and emotion by event-related potentials (ERPs)

Timm Rosburg

 

Event-related potentials (ERPs) are calculated by averaging EEG segments time-locked to events. Such events might be stimuli (the picture of murder weapon), cognitive processes (I remember that I have seen it before), or motor responses (I indicate by button press that I have seen it before). In the field of forensic psychiatry, ERPs are unfortunately still rarely used. In my presentation, I will present studies on the processing of erotic stimuli and outline how such studies might help to identify pedophilic interest. I will show studies that inform about response inhibition deficits in offenders. Moreover, I will address the topic of concealed knowledge detection. In general, ERP recordings allow the detection of behavior that would otherwise remain unobservable. Due the averaging of such responses, it is, however, not a mind-reading method but a method to identify cognitive processes with a high temporal resolution, to detect alterations of such processes by for example mental disorders or drugs, or to make some probabilistic conclusions about the presence of concealed knowledge. This plenary lecture is complemented by a workshop on ERPs, which provides some methodological background knowledge. 

 

Timm Rosburg, Ph.D.is a research psychologist with a vast experience in the field of clinical neurophysiology. He authored more than 70 peer-reviewed publications on this topic. Timm was until recently affiliated with the Forensic Department of the University Psychiatric Clinics Basel (Switzerland) and now works at the Department of Clinical Research of the University of Basel. 

Discussion of the usefulness of indirect latency-based assessment of pedohebephilic interest

Alexander F. Schmidt

 

In this short workshop a brief introduction on indirect latency-based measures of sexual interest and their potential for forensic assessments will be given. It will focus on the multimethod Explicit and Implicit Sexual Interest Profile (EISIP, Banse, Schmidt, & Clarbour, 2010) consisting of self-report, viewing time, and Implicit Association Test measures of pedo-, hebe-, and teleiophilic sexual interest and how these can be used in clinical and forensic contexts. Limitations of these measures will be outlined that are a result of the underlying psychological processes that so far are only partly understood. There will be room to actively discuss the diagnostic potential as well as the limitations of latency-based assessment paradigms.     

 

Alexander F. Schmidt is a Senior Lecturer at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany where he teaches forensic psychology. He has an approbation as cognitive-behavioral psychotherapist for adults. His research interests include sexual behavior and criminal psychology with a focus on indirect latency-based measures of (paraphilic and atypical) sexual interests and how these are linked to sexual offending. Alexander has published extensively on sexual offending against children and forensic evaluations of sexual offenders as well as other forensic expert assessments. He serves as an expert witness on paraphilic interests in family and criminal court proceedings and has been working with offender and non-offending psychotherapy populations. He serves as an associate editor of the Archives of Sexual Behavior and is member on several editorial boards. He has been awarded with the Young Scientist's Best Dissertation Award from the Legal Psychology Division in the German Psychological Society (DGPs) for his PhD thesis on criminal responsibility assessment.