world congresses

Spreading the knowledge in Conductive Education

I have just read a blog posting from Ralph Strzałkowski about professionals and their options/requirements for keeping up to date with new developments and practices:

He uses his own profession of the Law as an example. As far as he can, see conductors do not keep up to date like this.

Longman’s Dictionary defines a profession as

‘a calling requiring specialised knowledge and often long and intensive academic preparation’

and a professional as

‘characterised by or conforming to the technical and ethical standards of a profession’

These definitions should be applicable to Conductive Education but perhaps a more visibly united profession with an agreed policy of research, continuing professional development, agreed standards and a growing literature would help in opening up Conductive Education and removing the apparent secrecy.

Most professions have:

  • A very active publishing field in the form of books, journals and research papers. In Conductive Education there is no currently produced journal recording developments, research studies and practice. Occasional books are published but not widely bought or read.
  • A professional body to oversee standards, research, cooperation, publishing. There is no such body in CE. In some countries there are associations but each has its cultural agenda and not all actively promote CE to the wider world. As a professional librarian I was required to pay annual membership fees (based on my salary) to the UK Library Association in order to keep my qualifications, and received a monthly journal reporting developments in the field.
  • Continuous research projects on the go. Academic interest in CE has diminished. There have very few reports published in academic journals the past ten years. Conductors need to become involved in their own projects and report them.
  • Training institutions that publish and set up research. As far as I am aware very little has been published by the current conductor training organisations, either by individuals or as organisations.
  • Regular conferences, both international and national, with published proceedings. CE has an International Congress every three years but ends up with a very full programme giving little time for each presentation. No proceedings since the 1st in 1990 have ever been published, only abstracts.


Conductors are a relatively new and small profession compared to some, e.g. medicine, education and the law. They have not had the years and numbers of people to build up a literature and reputation that older professions have.

Conductors are spread very thinly worldwide but modern technology should facilitate communication, discussion and cooperation.

Norman Perrin named as an honorary conductor for 2013

The World Congress of Conductive Education takes place every three years and the next one will be in October this year in Munich.

At these congresses a number of people are awarded honorary conductor status for their contributions to Conductive Education. The first group of these, announced in 1990 at the First World Congress in Budapest, included Andrew Sutton, and I was surprised to be included myself in  2010.

This year Norman Perrin, a British parent who established and runs his own centre, Paces, in Sheffield, Yorkshire has been named as honorary conductor. Norman, parent of Sarah, who has cerebral palsy, has worked tirelessly for Conductive Education since the late 1980s publicising its benefits, attending conferences and meetings, lobbying politicians,writing papers, and now his blog, whilst dealing with the day to day running of Paces.
In the past there have usually been a number of people selected, but I have looked on the Congress website, the International Pető Association website and the Pető Institute website to try and discover who this year’s might be, but without success. There is nothing there, maybe it will come later.

In the meantime, congratulations, Norman, a well deserved honour!

Conductive Education World Congress, 8, 2013 – latest information

It is a year now since the 7th World Congress for Conductive Education, that was held in Hong Kong, and the German hosts of the 8th Congress, to be held in 2013, are starting to get organised and prepared for it.

A website was established earlier in the year

announcing the basic details and information to come with a very colourful logo. Since then an English language flyer has been posted on Phoenix Konductive Forderung’s website:

This has produced some comments online:

On reading the leaflet I am inclined to agree with both of them.

Running and organising the Congress must entail a huge amount of work, and be a massive management and administrative operation, especially if all the documentation, flyers, programme, letters etc are needed in what is not the first language of the host country. The first Congress to have a website, I believe, was the 6th . .Those involved in organising this put together a website containing all the necessary information that would be required in good English:

 SAHK in Hong Kong became the hosts of the 7th Congress. I attended this one and was very impressed by all the material produced, the pre-Congress administration, the organisation of the whole event and of course their amazing website – all in English. A hard act to follow.

The Germans have to follow this and I don’t envy them the task! It is important for them and those wanting to find out information about the event that the language is right, and it is vital for the reputation of Conductive Education. The International Pető Association oversees the event so perhaps this can offer some help with this from its membership so that after the next 22 months of preparation the organisers will present a Congress they, and the whole of Conductive Education will be proud of.

Conductive Education books at the World Congress

Several people have asked me if it will be possible to buy books published by Conductive Education Press at the Congress.
We have made Conductive Education Press publications easily accessible from anywhere in the world and deliverable to your door at the click of a mouse.

CEP is a publisher and not a bookseller with premises and a physical stall.

Single copies of the titles will be available to look at during the Congress and a leaflet to take away containing information about all titles. I believe there may be information about a book from the Peto Institute available in the same way, Susie Mallett is working on a pamphlet, and there may be others too.

Usually at conferences books are available to order, rather than purchase there and then. A catalogue or titles may be available to look at and a form provided to complete to obtain copies. Sometimes there are copies available to buy, but not often; for instance, if the congress is being held in the home country of the  publisher it would be possible to take multiple copies to sell – perhaps SAHK will do this with their publications.  No airline luggage restrictions for them!

By the way, feedback from all of you who obtain and read copies would be very welcome.
It looks as though 2010 will see the publication of at least four titles on Conductive Education, quite an achievement!

Honorary conductors

I received an email re the exact date that Marion Fang was made an honorary conductor and it set me thinking about honorary conductors in general. In the process I remembered having seen a list on the Internet in the past and have managed to track it down on the website of the 5th World Congress of Conductive Education, 2007.

Here it states the criteria for the award.

 The College Senate of the International Peto Institute gives the Honorary Conductor Award. It was established in 1990 to recognise the work of non-conductors in the field, which is well known both in the homeland and internationally. Nominations are initiated by leading persons and are submitted to the International Peto Association Executive Committee. The IPA Nominating Committee considers the person’s contribution to the development of Conductive Education and is deserving of wider and more formal recognition. Final nomination is submitted to the Senate of the International Peto College who are authorized to make a final decision about acceptance.


Included is a list of the recipients from 1990-2007 which includes Marion Fang who received her award in 2001 at the World Congress held in London.The site also has a list of all the World Congresses with their dates and venues.

No doubt nominations to receive the award at the Congress in Hong Kong, 2010 will be requested soon, if they have not been already.

Conductive Education classics no.3

Proceedings of the First World Congess, 1990
The First World Congress on Conductive Education, ‘Preparation for the Future’, was held in Budapest, 29 November – 1 December 1990, and had delegates from all over the world, mostly from the UK. This gathering was organised by the International Pető Association and the proceedings were published by the International Pető Institute for the International Pető Association. A list of the overseas delegates, opening addresses by Mária Hári and Mr Arpád Göncz, President of the Hungarian Republic, are included with a mix of abstracts and presentations. Many of the presenters – including Helga Keil (Austria), Udi Lion (Israel), Claire Cotter (Australia), Frieda Spivack (US), Andrew Sutton (UK), Masanao Murai (Japan), Brendan McConville (Northern Ireland), Marion Fang (Hong Kong), – were well-known as pioneers of Conductive Education in their countries. Well-known Hungarians included Mária Hári , Ildiko Kozma and Eva Beck.
This publication provides a fascinating glimpse of the Conductive Education world at the end of the 1980s and the beginning of the 1990s.
Not only was this the first World Congress, it has been the only one to have published proceedings. Future congresses were reported in a variety of ways but never as proceedings.
Subsequent Congresses
The second took place in Budapest, in 1995, was entitled ‘Continuity and Change’. It was recorded in magazine format. as Pető Magazine, in the summer of 1996. This included some of the presentations, news from around the world, a list of publications (including an advance announcement of the International Journal of Conductive Education, which unfortunately never became a reality), and a list of Conductive Education courses and organisations. There were no abstracts.
Number three, ‘From Creation to Development’, was hosted by the Warasibe Institute and took place in Urakawa, Hokkaido, Japan in 1999. Delegates received a list of abstracts (available in English and Japanese) of all 50 presentations and study abstracts. I am not aware of any other material.
London was the venue for the Fourth congress in 2001, organized jointly with Scope (UK). A selection of papers read were published in Conductive Education Occasional Papers, no. 8 by the International Pető Institute, and the Library has bound copies of a number of written presentations collected on the day by delegates from the Foundation for Conductive Education. A book of abstracts was published as supplement 3 to the Conductive Education Occasional Papers.
The Fifth congress returned to Budapest in 2004, entitled ‘Conductive Education Worldwide Science and Quality’. Conductive Education Occasional Papers no.11 contains a selection of papers and Supplements 4 and 5 contain the abstracts, in English and Hungarian respectively. The library also has a number of papers collected from presenters, in Power Point format as well as typescript.
Move & Walk, Sweden, hosted the Sixth Congress in August 2007 and published a programme, report and evaluation on the conference’s website Bound abstracts were given to all delegates as Conductive Education Occasional Papers, Supplement 6. As far as I know no other material is available.
The Seventh, ‘East meets West: Adaptation and Development’ will be hosted by SAHK in Hong Kong in December 2010. Further details will be published on the Congress website shortly
Let us hope that it is well attended and has many interesting and stimulating presentations, and most importantly these will be published as proceedings.
The International Pető Association’s World Congresses are run in association with organisations in the host countries.
Copies of Conductive Education Occasional Papers and its Supplements can be obtained from the Hári Mária Library at the Pető Institute

World congress 2010

It was great to find out via Andrew’s blog that the VII World Congress in 2010 is now in the serious planning stage with its website under construction. Two years seems a long way away but it will soon be here. No doubt a call for papers will follow in the New Year.The first six congresses have resulted in a mixed bag of materials including programmes, a magazine, books of abstracts and some of the presentations included in issues of Conductive Education Occasional Papers (these incidentally appear to have ceased publication), which are held by the library here. But no full proceedings. The last congress in 2007 did have a website but only produced a brief report and evaluation.

I hope that SAHK will put this on the list of things to do and produce proceedings as there are bound to be some people who don’t/can’t go to the congress but will still be interested in what the presenters have to say. This international congress offers an opportunity for disseminating what is going on in Conductive Education all over the world and reporting what conductors are actually doing. Publishing the proceedings would also add to the literature as I have mentioned before in a previous blog.

I don’t think I can over emphasise that there is a great need for people to write things down in detail for others to read, share and learn from as happens in other professions , so please forgive me if you think I am repeating myself.