Digital revolution: a group attachment perspective

28th September 2019
1 Daleham Gardens, 9:30am -3:30pm

An open workshop to reflect on the digital revolution from a group and attachment perspective

Speakers: Begum Maitra, Maria Canete and Arturo Ezquerro

This is part of a conjoint project to strengthen collaboration between the Bowlby Centre (BC), the Institute of Group Analysis (IGA), Supporting Relationships and Families (SRF) and the International Attachment Network (IAN).

Convenors: Maria Canete and Arturo Ezquerro

Chair: Elaine Arnold (SRF)

The internet has brought down geographical hurdles and has made various aspects of our lives easier. However, it has significantly reduced the time we spend together and has created an illusion of intimacy. Digital gadgets are good for making contact, for sharing information and for commercial transactions, but not so good for deepening attachment relationships. British people of all ages now devote more time to digital devices and screens than to any other activity except sleeping: 25% fee disconnected to their attachment figures and 33% are socially isolated...

If John Bowlby were alive today, we can imagine, he would have welcomed the benefits of digital technology. But he would have been cautious about the risk that our lives might be undermined by an affectionless virtual environment. He would have probably said that we need more than pixelated electronic ties: we need healthier attachments to create a more secure society, in which we can nurture communities of meaningful, person-to-person and group relationships.

This open and inclusive workshop aims to explore the impact of the digital revolution on attachment relationships, in families and wider groups. We shall study some psychological signposts from clinical material, as well as possible future directions. Delegates will be encouraged to take an active part in the reflective space provided by professionally conducted, large and small, discussion groups.

Maria Canete (MC), a consultant psychotherapist and group analyst, is a teacher at the Institute of Group Analysis and former director of the group psychotherapy programme at University College Hospital, London. She has published extensively in the field.

Arturo Ezquerro, a consultant psychiatrist, psychoanalytic psychotherapist and group analyst, is former Head of NHS Medical Psychotherapy Services in Brent, London. He has over 70 publications in 5 languages, including Encounters with John Bowlby: Tales of Attachment (Routledge).

Begum Maitra, an adult Jungian analyst and consultant child & adolescent psychiatrist, has worked in India and inner-city London, co-edited Critical Voices in  Child & Adolescent Mental Health and co-authored Culture and Madness   which explores the uses of her film How Culture Matters




09:30 AM    Registration and coffee 

10:00 AM    The terrors of attachment: sociability, uses and misuses of ‘screens’ (BM) 

11:00 AM    Small groups 12:00 PM Lunch (not provided)

01:00 PM        Attachment in a digital world (MC and AE) 

02:00 PM        Large Group 

03:30 PM End

FEES (early bird to 21 June 2019) 

IGA Members and Students £49/£59 

BC Members and Students £49/£59 

IAN Members £49/£59 

SRF Members £49/£59 

Public £69/£79




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