The future of systems therapy: Shedding myths and facing opportunities

J. C. Coyne, H. A. Liddle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Systems therapy is moving toward paradigmatic parity with more conventional approaches to psychotherapy. Systems therapists are faced with expanding opportunities but need to shed old myths, temper past claims, and develop a stronger role for research in the approach's legitimation. Within systems therapy, there has been a breakdown of schoolism and movement toward technical eclecticism and theoretical integration. The growing contact between systems therapy and the larger movement toward psychotherapy integration could have any of three results: harmony at any price, mutual repulsion, or an extended dialogue, the outcome of which cannot be assured. Systems therapy researchers have much to gain from conventional psychotherapy research and in turn can offer a perspective on the process of change in the context of close relationships. Some contrary evidence and trends counter to the future direction that we propose for systems therapy are noted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-50
Number of pages7
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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