The State of Co-operation between IAAP & IUPsyS

Prepared By The Officers Of IAAP And IUPsyS; April 2000

Preliminary Remarks

The Executive Committee of IAAP and the Assembly of IUPsyS have expressed the desire to receive a report on the state and progress of co-operation between IAAP and IUPsyS. This report was prepared by the IAAP-IUPsyS Joint Committee.

1. Organizational context

The two organizations differ in the kind of membership they have:
IAAP is an international association whose approximately 2000 members are individuals from around 80 countries. 
IUPsyS is an international federation whose approximately 70 members are national psychological societies or other national bodies (e.g., academies of science).

Both organizations reserve affiliate status to about 10 – 20 international individual membership organizations, IAAP being also affiliated to IUPsyS.

Traditionally, IAAP has represented the scientific basis of psychological practice broadly defined. IUPsyS, although mandated by its statutes as addressing the development of psychology as both a science and a profession, has traditionally focussed more on basic psychological science. In practice, the orientations of IUPsyS and IAAP overlap to a certain extent. Both organizations have responded to an increasingly recognized international need to address both science and practice issues. Together, IUPsyS and IAAP ensure the broadest existing representation of the discipline and practice of psychology in the world.

2. Inter-organizational context

IAAP and IUPsyS have co-operated in various formal and informal ways over the years. A desire for more ongoing co-operation and consideration of how this might be achieved led to the creation of the IAAP-IUPsyS Joint Committee in 1994. The Joint Committee is composed of the Officers of the two organizations.

In the more distant past the relationship between the two organizations was less co-operative. For example, there was some competitiveness with regard to representing psychology on the international level, which may have weakened the public image of a cohesive world psychology. However, in recent years considerable improvement in the relationship can be noted.

3. Ongoing co-operative activities

An important area of co-operation is in the field of International Congresses. Since 1976 International Congresses of Applied Psychology (ICAP-IAAP) and International Congresses of Psychology (ICP-IUPsyS) have been co-ordinated by alternating the two organizations’ responsibility for sponsoring the congresses every second year. Early information-sharing among Officers about possible future congress venues has been disseminated within both organizations, and has generally helped to avoid undue geographic overlap.

A recent agreement has ensured that the hosting organization will always provide the other organization one free promotional booth in the congress exhibition area, complimentary rooms at the Congress site for Executive Committee and Officers meetings, and program time for symposia sponsored by the organization.

In the past, formal IUPsyS Assembly meetings occurred only in conjunction with ICP; since 1998, formal IUPsyS Assembly meetings have been held at both ICP and ICAP, enhancing the presence of IUPSyS at IAAP meetings.

Both organizations jointly planned Regional Congresses in areas of the world where psychologists usually find it difficult to participate in international congresses due to economic restrictions. The first Regional Congress was initiated by IUPsyS in Guangzhou, China (1995) and has been followed by congresses in Mexico City, Mexico (1997) and Durban, South Africa (1999). It is the intention to continue to organize such regional conferences in close co-operation with national hosts in the years between international congresses. IUPsyS and IAAP will also continue to alternate responsibility as primary and secondary co-sponsor. It is mutually understood that such regional congresses remain a joint responsibility of both organizations, both financially as well as in terms of participation and planning. Additional national, regional and international co-sponsorship is solicited. The International Association for Cross-cultural Psychology has thus far been a co-sponsor for each Regional Congress.

Major joint efforts have been successfully implemented in the form of Advanced Research Training Seminars (ARTS). A common framework of principles and criteria for the conduct of ARTS in connection with international congresses was developed jointly by both organizations. ARTS serves as an important capacity-building activity by offering training to improve psychological competencies of participants from economically less developed regions of the world. . Other international associations are also invited to contribute to ARTS through financial and program support. ARTS have been conducted in connection with all international congresses since the ICP in Brussels 1992.

The World Forum of International Psychology Associations, initiated by IAAP in 1998 on the occasion of the ICAP in San Francisco was co-chaired by the Presidents of both organizations. The Forum was attended by 25 Presidents or their representatives of major regional and international psychology associations. It provided an opportunity for the leaders of psychology associations to freely exchange views on the needs of world psychology and the possibilities for concerted action to improve the standing and potential contribution of the discipline in world affairs. In response to requests from participants, a Directory of International Psychology Associations has been prepared and is available. The Forum will be held at each future international congress.

Since 1994, Joint Committee meetings have become productive, regular events twice a year. They facilitate information exchange and joint planning on all current salient issues of common interest confronting the two organizations. Similarly, regular Exchange of periodic publications has been instituted. Whenever possible, the Presidents or other Officers of IUPsyS and IAAP meet with their counterparts of regional associations or federations to harmonize and initiate co-operation. For example, in recent years there have beenperiodic meetings of Officers of IAAP and IUPsyS with the Presidents and Officers of regional associations or federations.

4. Envisioned future cooperative actions

The positive co-operation between IAAP and IUPsyS that has emerged in recent years has pointed to various areas where increased relations and joint activities seem advisable and useful:

(i) Working with international bodies (e.g., ILO, ICSU, ISSC, UN secretariat, UNHCR, UNESCO, UNICEF, WHO, World Bank);
(ii) Ad hoc co-operation in response to critical incidents (e.g., disasters, wars);
(iii) Co-operation between IAAP’s Divisions with ongoing IUPsyS activities (e.g., Division of Health Psychology and IUPsyS HealthNet);
(iv) Collaboration of Secretaries-General to better determine needs (e.g., national and regional level of psychological resources already in place and opportunities to make a useful contribution;
(v) Further development and increased saliency of the World Forum;
(vi) Development of international psychological directories;
(vii) Conduct of joint world surveys of psychology;

5. Outlook

The main responsibility in coming years will be to continue and further the trustful working relations and task-oriented co-operation between both organizations that have developed in recent years. In pursuing this goal, attention should be focused on exploring how existing links may be strengthened by creating institutional arrangements similar to those developed in connection with ARTS.