Erikson Institute

Senior Erikson Scholar

Vamik D. Volkan, M.D.

Dr. Vamik Volkan, founder of the International Dialogue InitiativeDr. Vamik D. Volkan, M.D. is Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, an Emeritus Training and Supervising Analyst at the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute, and a past president of the International Society for Political Psychology, the Virginia Psychoanalytic Society, the Turkish-American Neuropsychiatric Society and the American College of Psychoanalysts. He holds Honorary Doctorate degrees from Kuopio University, Finland and from Ankara University, Turkey.

For nearly three decades, Dr. Volkan has led interdisciplinary teams to various trouble spots around the world and has brought high-level ‘enemy’ representatives together for years-long unofficial dialogues. His work in the field has resulted in his developing new theories about large-group behavior in times of peace and war. Dr. Volkan was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008, supported by letters from 27 countries. He has authored or coauthored forty books and has edited or co-edited ten more.  His recent projects include clinical teaching on subjects like mourning and technical issues in psychotherapy, books on psychotherapeutic technique and large group identity, an authobiographical account of his international work, and the formation of the International Dialogue Initiative. Dr. Volkan began his yearly visits to the Center in 2003.