Farhad Dalal
Statistical Spin, Linguistic Obfuscation:
The Art of Overselling the CBT Evidence Base.


In this presentation I will subject elements of CBT research to a critique on its own terms - that is, from within the very 'Scientific' paradigm that CBT aspires to. I will begin arguing that as the 'third wave' of CBT (Mindfulness, CAT, ACT, DBT, etc) starts to give weight to ways of thinking that it previously disparaged, it comes to look more and more like the other psychotherapies that CBT seeks to distinguish itself from. I liken this process to that of colonisation and its way of appropriation.

Next, I take issue with manualisation itself, to say that the insistence that clinicians should stick closely to manualised protocols is driven by the needs of researchers (which is to keep control of the 'variables' in their experiments) rather than in the clinical interests of patients.

In the main part of the paper I will attend to the science behind the research and the ways that it gets written up. First up is the problem of 'publication bias', which when combined with the research requirements of NICE, constitutes a betrayal of the ideals of Science itself. Next, I will look closely at two interlinked well regarded research papers that demonstrate the efficacy of Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy, and are widely cited as examples of good research. A close reading of these papers will show that the picture is not as convincing as their abstracts would have us believe.

Farhad Dalal
is a psychotherapist and Group Analyst in private practice in Devon. He also works with organizations. He was Associate Fellow at the University of Hertfordshire's Business School. Currently, he is Visiting Professor at the PhD School, Open University of Holland. He was invited to give the Annual Foulkes Lecture in 2012. He has been studying and writing on the themes of psychotherapy, discrimination, equality and diversity for over twenty five years. He lectures and teaches internationally. He has published three books, Taking the Group Seriously, Race, Colour and the Processes of Racialization, and his most recent book Thought Paralysis: The Virtues of Discrimination, is a constructive critique of the Equality movements.
The Limbus Critical Psychotherapy Conference
Challenging the Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapies:
The Overselling of CBT's Evidence Base
Farhad Dalal
For further information please contact: Farhad Dalal, Limbus, 1 The Plains, Totnes, Devon TQ9 5DR; Tel: 0778 222 0385 
email cbt_conf 'at' limbus 'dot' org 'dot' uk
 
Website