About EFPP

EFPP in 30 words

The EFPP is a European umbrella organisation that links together national networks of adult, child & adolescent, group, and couple & family psychoanalytic psychotherapists and psychoanalytic organisations that share the EFPP objectives.


The European Federation for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (EFPP) was created in 1991 when the European Union was granting greater freedom of movement of individuals between member countries. It was founded by the British psychoanalyst and psychiatrist Brian Martindale in collaboration with colleagues from the UK and other countries in Europe.

The first president of the EFPP was Brian Martindale (1991-1997). Among the founding members was Serge Frisch, a psychoanalyst and psychiatrist from Luxembourg, who took over from 1997 to 2003. Siv Boalt Bo√ęthius, a psychoanalyst and psychologist from Sweden, was elected in 2003 and served for four years until 2007. She was succeeded by Luc Moyson, a founding member of the EFPP and clinical psychologist from Belgium (2007 to 2011). Anne Marie Schloesser, a psychoanalyst and psychologist from Germany was elected president in 2011.

The primary aim of the EFPP from the start was to contribute significantly to the well-being and mental health among people living in Europe and to facilitate communication between psychoanalytic psychotherapists in different parts of Europe. The EFPP is concerned with extending the availability of psychoanalytic psychotherapy and its applications in member organisations in different countries.

The EFPP promotes a European community network of psychoanalytic psychotherapists through activities such as the EFPP Conferences, and through the support of training programmes and research. The EFPP Website allows its members to share information and knowledge concerning psychoanalytic practice and research, and the EFPP Book Series has published a substantial series of books and will continue to do so under the general editorship of Anne-Marie Schloesser. The year 2011 saw a new venture, namely the inauguration of the e-journal EFPP Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Review, edited by Gila Ofer.

During the first years of the EFPP the focus was mainly on the type of training psychoanalytic psychotherapists needed in order to work effectively. The discussion regarding criteria for training in psychoanalytic psychotherapy had significant political ramifications as it involved individual clinicians as well as training institutes in many countries. Thanks to these discussions, several organisations were able to develop their own training programmes. The international network afforded by the EFPP was an important one, and the communication taking place between colleagues at the EFPP conferences was and still is essential for further development.

EFPP Membership, Sections and Board

Membership in the EFPP is open to all European organisations. Exceptionally an organisation situated outside the European borders may be accepted if its application for membership has been accepted by the EFPP Board.

Currently 30 countries in Europe are represented by their organisations as full members in the EFPP. Additionally, there are associate and observer members. The EFPP is an organisation of member organisations. Psychoanalytic psychotherapists belong to the EFPP through their organisation which is a member of the EFPP. Each member organisation with full membership can send up to eight delegates, two for each of the four sections, to the biennial Delegates Meeting. The Delegates are appointed by their member organisations.

The member organisations of one country form a National Network. The task of this strong formation is the leveraging of synergies and bundling of forces when it comes to negotiations with political structures in the given country. The representatives of the National Network which itself represents all member organisations can then speak with one voice.

EFPP Structure

The EFPP consists of four sections working with psychoanalytic psychotherapy for Adults, Children and Adolescents, Groups, and Couple and Family Psychotherapy. The youngest of them, the Couple and Family section, was established at the biennial Delegates' Meeting in 2009.

The Board consists of two persons from each section (Section Chair and Section Representative) plus the President. According to the EFPP constitution (amended in 2017), the members of the Board are elected by the Delegates in the section assemblies. The president is chosen directly by the assembly of all Delegates at their biennial meeting. Members of the Board including the president are elected for four years and can be re-elected for another period of four years. The Board also requires the help of an administrative secretary. The Board can co-opt members to take part in the work with secific tasks.

Constitution and more information about delegate roles.