2020 Poster Displays

Presented by Dr Rainer Hermann Kurz


Background and Aims:
This poster critically reviews BPS publications concerning complex trauma memories.

In the context of advocacy work relevant documents were reviewed.

In 1995 ‘Recovered Memories – Report of the BPS Working Party’ was published outlining causes and symptoms of complex trauma. Their report in ‘The Psychologist’ revealed that 15% of practitioners had encountered Satanist Ritual Abuse (SRA).
‘Guidelines on Memory and the Law’ issued 2008 by the BPS Research Board were developed under the leadership of RB Chair Prof Martin Conway who remains to this day on the academic advisory board of the ‘British False Memory Society’. In at least three UK court cases since his evidence was dismissed by judges. In 2010 the restrictive definition ‘A memory expert is a person who is recognised by the memory research community to be a memory researcher. ’ was revised to ‘… to possess knowledge relevant to the particular case.’
In 2019 a new Memory-Based Evidence task and finish group was assembled that is currently working on a document that is due for independent and public review in 2020.

The research suggests that trauma-informed practitioners and researchers actively educate (learned) societies (e.g. like Dr Ellen Lacter’s site endritualabuse.org).


Level: All

Intended Audience: Mental Health professionals working with complex trauma victims

Learning outcomes: 

1) Introduction to BPS 1995 Recovered Memories Working Party Report and SRA
2) Overview of 2008/2010 guidelines developed under Prof Martin Conway (BFMS)
3) Update on ‘Memory-Based Evidence’ task and finish group progress
4) Appreciation of professional tensions between BPS, ESTD and British False Memory Society
5) How to counter False Memory lobby narrative with Dr Ellen Lacter’s website endritualabuse.org



Rainer Kurz is a Chartered Psychologist specialising in assessment.

Rainer studied Psychology in Bavaria before moving to the UK in 1989. Since completing his MSc in 1990 he worked in Research & Development roles for leading test publishers in the UK completing his PhD dissertation on ability testing in 2000. He is author of more than 150 papers, posters, articles and book chapters. He is the Science & Practice Strategy Convener of the BPS Division of Occupational Psychology (DOP).

Since 2014 Rainer delivered more than 30 presentations on trauma, personality disorder, dyslexia, dissociation and healing at international peer-reviewed clinical conferences.