Message from Program Chair
Kiara Timpano, Ph.D.
University of Miami
As the 2018 Program Chair, I am delighted to welcome you to ABCT's 52nd Annual Convention!
Washington represents the perfect venue for our conference. As a city, D.C. recognizes and honors our past with a wealth of premier museums, celebrates our international role by welcoming an international spirit with embassies from across the globe, and supports and encourages scientific advances as the home for the National Institutes of Health. Our convention-with the theme of Cognitive Behavioral Science, Treatment, and Technology - is intended to similarly recognize the past, celebrate international and interdisciplinary collaborations, and look towards a future marked by important advances to help reduce the global impact of mental illness.
We find ourselves at the cusp of a new era, marked by technological advances in a range of different disciplines that have the potential to dramatically affect the science we conduct, as well as the treatments we deliver. Our program will showcase research and clinical practices and training that highlight a number of avenues, including how these innovations are influencing our investigations of the causes and consequences of psychological illness, how they are similarly opening new frontiers in the ways that assessments and treatments are developed, how patients access help, how clinicians monitor response, and how the broader field disseminates evidence-based practices.
Presentations will address how the strong, theoretical, and practical foundations of CBT give us the exciting opportunity to use our multidisciplinary values to identify new and emerging technologies that can catapult our research on mental health problems and well-being to the next level. I am incredibly honored and excited to highlight our invited speakers and special programing. Pim Cuijpers from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam will present "The Dodo Bird in the Digital Age: How e-Mental Health Can Improve Prevention and Treatment of Mental Health Problems," which will showcase exciting work being conducted in Europe on CBT interventions delivered through the web. Matthew Nock from Harvard University will focus on new advances in assessing psychopathology by discussing real-time assessment of self-injurious behaviors in his talk "Using New Technologies to Better Understand, Predict, and Prevent Suicidal Behavior." Pat Arean from the University of Washington will highlight next-generation possibilities for how treatments could be delivered with a talk entitled "Improving the Quality of Evidence-Based Treatments: Can (and Should) Technology Help?" Additional special programming will comprise discussions with our colleagues in the broader field, including a conversation between Bethany Teachman and Josh Gordon, the director of the National Institute of Mental Health, and panels focused on translating research to policy, as well as NIMH "office hours." Finally, in her presidential address, "CBT in the Digital Age: Enhancing Effectiveness and Reach of Research and Psychotherapy," Sabine Wilhelm will highlight how treatment might be enhanced with technology by incorporating virtual reality exercises, crowdsourced peer-to-peer cognitive reappraisal platforms, chat bots, smartphone-based treatment apps sensors, and several other tools into therapy.
It has been an honor to serve as Program Chair, and I am grateful to President Sabine Wilhelm and the ABCT Board for inviting me and supporting me through this process. Working with Sabine is a privilege and genuine pleasure, and I am so excited to see the conference we dreamed about come to fruition. Making ABCT happen each year is said to "take a village" and there are many members of that village I would like to thank. First and foremost is the 2018 Program Committee for their expertise, careful reviews, and flexibility during the peer review process. This year we had a record number of 278 reviewers and 123 "Super Reviewers," and I could not be prouder of the well-rounded and exciting program! Second, I thank the chairs of the Convention and Education Issues Committee for their dedication and exceptional job developing this year's stimulating program: Barbara Kamholz (CIT), Aidan Wright (AMASS), Lauren Weinstock (Workshops), Courtney Benjamin Wolk (Master Clinician Seminars), Cole Hooley (Research & Professional Development), Christina Boisseau (Institutes), and Alyssa Ward (2019 Program Chair). I sincerely appreciate the valuable insights and support of Barbara Kamholz, Coordinator of Convention and Education Issues, and Sandra Pimentel, Board Liaison. Third, a hearty thanks to Mary Jane Eimer and her team at the Central Office-especially Tonya Childers and Stephen Crane-who showed extraordinary devotion to the Convention planning and ABCT in general. Fourth, I am incredibly grateful to the former Program Chair, Jordana Muroff, for her invaluable guidance, support, and friendship. Very special thanks go to Jamie Port, Assistant Program Chair. I am forever indebted to Jamie's diligence, unwavering commitment, clear thinking and, most important, humor-I know that I had the right partner-in-crime for this process and could not have done it with anyone else. Finally, a heartfelt thanks to my family for their patience, cheer, and teamwork!
Wishing you all a fun and stimulating convention!