Research at TCCR
The Tavistock Centre for Couple Relationships (TCCR) began life as a mixed practice and research organisation looking to find effective ways of intervening in family distress after the Second World War. It has been engaged in this project ever since in one form or another. As such it has used a variety of approaches to researching couple relationships and the ways in which workers and the couples they work with affect each other, whether this is in:
- socially-based casework,
- the intimate privacy of an ongoing psychotherapy, or
- the ways that agencies and organisations work with and against each other.
In this variety it is a proud (and productive) member of the Tavistock family of organisations and shares with them an interest in the application of psychoanalytic ideas to social and psychological matters. As a centre of advanced study into the couple relationship and its therapeutic treatment TCCR has a particular perspective on both research and evidence in the field of couple relationships, and is well qualified to enter into contemporary debates about this complex area.
Randomised Control Trial of TCCR’s “Parenting Together” Mentalization-Based Therapy for Parents in Conflict. 2011-2015. Funded by the Department of Education. Principle Investigator Professor Mary Target of UCL and Co-Principal Investigators, Leezah Hertzmann and Dr David Hewison, TCCR.
Outcome Research on the effectiveness of TCCR’s Clinical Services. Ongoing.
Research Steering Group Memberships
Evaluation of Relationship Support Interventions. Department of Education. Reporting 2013.
The Department is currently evaluating a range of relationship support interventions including Marriage Preparation and Couple Counselling.
Enduring Love? Open University. The Enduring Love? project is a mixed methods study on long-term adult couple relationships. The findings will add an important dimension to understandings of personal and family lives in contemporary society. The project is funded by the ERSC.
What Families Need. Family and Parenting Institute and Office for Public Management
Previous research includes
- Effectiveness of couple counselling as an intervention in post-natal depression, compared with group and individual interventions.
- Effectiveness of Brief Psychotherapy for couples.
- Impact of child bereavement
- Impact of birth of the first child
- Impact of infertility
- Impact of unemployment
- Impact of Adult Attachment Status on couple relationships.
Indicative references (see TCCR’s Annotated List of Publications for full details)
Balfour, A. and Lanman, M. (2011), An evaluation of time-limited psychodynamic psychotherapy for couples: A pilot study. Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice. doi: 10.1111/j.2044-8341.2011.02030.x
Bannister, K., A. Lyons, et al. (1955). Social Casework in Marital Problems. London, Tavistock Publications
Clulow, C., & Donaghy, M. (2010). Developing the couple perspective in parenting support: evaluation of a service initiative for vulnerable families. Journal of Family Therapy, 32: 142-168.
Haldane, D. (1991). "Holding hope in trust: a review of the publications of the Tavistock Institute of Marital Studies, 1955-1991." Journal of Social Work Practice 5: 199-204.
Hewison, D. (2012). Approaches to Researching the Evidence: an exploration of TCCR’s research into couple relationships and couple therapy, past and present. How Couple Relationships Shape Our World: Clinical Practice, Research & Policy Perspectives. A. Balfour, M. Morgan and C. Vincent London, Karnac Books.
Trist, E. and H. Murray, Eds. (1990). The Social Engagement of Social Science.. Volume 1: The Social-Psychological Perspective. London, Free Association Books.
Woodhouse, D. (1990). The Tavistock Institute of Marital Studies: evolution of a marital agency. Marriage: disillusion and hope. Papers celebrating forty years of the Tavistock Institute of Martial Studies. C. Clulow. London, Tavistock Institute of Marital Studies.