Wilma Bucci, Ph.D.

Leon Hoffman, M.D.

Bernard Maskit, Ph.D.
Chair, IRB

Sean Murphy, Ph.D.
Research Coordinator and Supervisor

The Pacella Research Center of the New York Psychoanalytic Society & Institute is the result of the merging of the Research Division of the Pacella Parent Child Center and the NYPSI Research Center.

The Research Center continues to try to move a research perspective closer to the center of NYPSI’s life in its educational programs and in the practice of psychoanalysis and psychotherapies.

In the report of the American Psychoanalytic Association Site Visiting Committee following their visit to NYPSI in early November 2014, the site visitors noted that the Pacella Parent Child Center is “A model for the country…on the forefront of the future of psychoanalysis.”

Research Committee:

Wilma Bucci and Leon Hoffman, Co-Directors; Bernard Maskit, Chair, IRB; Sean Murphy, Research Coordinator and Supervisor; Christopher Christian, Tehela Nimroody, Wendy Olesker, Timothy Rice, and Lissa Weinstein.

Click HERE to view the IRB Instructions and Application

Research Activities

1. Regulation Focused Psychotherapy for Children with Externalizing Behaviors (RFP-C): A Psychodynamic Perspective: Leon Hoffman, Timothy Rice, and Tracy Prout.
See web at Regulation Focused Psychotherapy and https://www.rfp-c.com/study/ to refer patients for study.

a. Royalties from the sale of the book go to the Pacella Research Center, which owns the copyright

b. Summer 2016: Pilot Study at Ferkauf funded by Pacella Funds. Sean Murphy statistical consultant. The children improved in both behaviors and emotion regulation capacities in the expected direction

c. RCT funded by the Far Fund to Tracy Prout at Ferkauf in process this past year. Aim is to have 20 kids in treatment group and 20 in wait-list control

d. Parent Group project funded by NYSPEP 2016-17 PARENTING EDUCATION PROGRAM MINI-GRANTS.

e. There have been many presentations, Extension Courses, and publications based on this work and several very positive book reviews. The most recent in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. The reviewer states: “Overall, this book and the proposed treatment offer practitioners a concise and wieldy psychodynamic approach to the treatment of externalizing disorders in children. It is well researched and thoughtful. It is modern, making meaningful connections to neuropsychiatry and other medical disciplines in thinking about how to help these tricky kids and their families.”

2. Development of a complex data base of 20 analytic and psychotherapy cases

Wilma Bucci, Bernard Maskit, Sean Murphy, You Zhou, Post-Doctoral Pacella Research Fellow, and Adam Fishman, Pacella Research Fellow.

At the October 18, 2017, Referential Process Seminar: Introduction of the New Treatment Data Base Including Multi-level Process and Outcome Measures, we will continue the examination of the therapy process from multiple perspectives including the participating clinician, other clinicians looking at videos and reading transcripts, and researchers applying computerized measures. Shuli Sandler and Jess Olson, who are advanced candidates at NYPSI, with Leon Hoffman are developing techniques for determining outcome of these cases (utilizing the insights gained in our original Treatment Center Study, which included two publications in 2012 and 2013.)

3. Creation of a computerized measure to evaluate Reflection/Reorganizing (RR) phase of the Referential Process:

According to the Multiple Code Theory, the referential process involves three phases: Arousal, Symbolizing and Reflection/Reorganizing. The WRAD provides a validated dictionary for identifying the Symbolizing phase; our goal here is to develop a dictionary model for the Reorganizing phase. It is our belief, and we now have some evidence to support it, that, just as with the symbolizing phase, people use a specific language style, marked to some extent by the greater or lesser use of certain function words, that is characteristic of high RR speech: Wilma Bucci, Bernard Maskit, Sean Murphy, You Zhou, and Adam Fishman. See http://www.thereferentialprocess.org for material about the Referential Process.

4. Development of Defense Mechanisms Manual for Children’s Doll Play (DMCP) Coding Manual.

Manual is almost ready to be published on https://figshare.com and an introductory paper is almost ready for submission: Tehela Nimroody, Leon Hoffman, Christopher Christian, Timothy Rice, and Sean Murphy

5. Quantitative and qualitative analyses of child and adolescent psychoanalyst interviews, including evaluation of CCRT (Core Conflictual Relational Theme–Luborsky) in aspects of Child Analyst Interviews. This project was undertaken in response to an emerging consensus that research is important to maintain and to develop the field of child and adolescent psychoanalysis. Twenty child and adolescent psychoanalysts underwent a semi-structured interview concerning their current practices, life backgrounds, and professional values. Paper from that project has been accepted and there have several posters and a book chapter: Sean Murphy, Leon Hoffman, and Alla Sheynkin (now a first year candidate at NYPSI).

6. Intervention Study of material from original Treatment Center Study:

Sean Murphy, Timothy Rice, Leon Hoffman, Emilia Chico (from Argentina).

7. Research activities for the Research and Development Committee  of the American Board of Psychoanalysis (ABP)

Studying a variety of aspects of the certification process. Sean Murphy, Leon Hoffman, and Wilma Bucci. (http://www.abpsa.org/research_and_development_committee)

8. Study of Language Measures of Referential Process during ruptures in patients from BRT (Brief Relational Therapy)

From the New School and Beth Israel. A poster covering early results was presented at the 2017 meeting of the Society for Psychotherapy Research. Christopher Christian was awarded a grant from Pacella Research Committee for this project.

9. Katie Aafjes van Doorn, who is now at Ferkauf, is applying for an IPA grant to apply the Referential Process measures in collaboration with our team to follow up material from a major research database.

Annual Reports

Pacella Research Report – October 2017