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MRI is revitalizing its mission to strengthen its impact and leverage advances that have occurred over the last decade

MRI will be selling its building to establish an endowment fund and continue to fund organizations who advance MRI’s mission.

PALO ALTO, CALIFORNIA, USA, February 7, 2019 / -- PRESS RELEASE Contact: Sophie Suberville
February 7th 2019 Phone: 650 321 3055

The Board of the Mental Research Institute (MRI) has completed its initial planning phase to revitalize the mission of the organization. The goal of this was to strengthen MRI’s impact, and leverage advances that have occurred over the last decade in the field of psychology of social systems and interactional approaches to the promotion of mental health through positive change in social systems.

Founded in 1959, by Don Jackson, the Mental Research Institute of Palo Alto, California, has been one of the leading sources of ideas in the area of interactional/systemic studies, brief psychotherapy, and family therapy. MRI started the first formal training program in family therapy, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and more than 700 papers and books were produced -- many of them seminal. MRI was a magnet for leading figures in the field. Among these, such internationally recognized innovators as Jay Haley, Paul Watzlawick, John Weakland, Virginia Satir, Richard Fisch, Jules Riskin, William Fry and John Bell. Through its many years at the Middlefield Road location, the founders presented creative models for the comprehensive approach to systemic family therapy and to brief therapy -- models which, in turn, have influenced subsequent brief and family therapy approaches throughout the world. One of the most widely cited articles in the field described the double bind theory. It was co-authored by Gregory Bateson, Don Jackson, Jay Haley, and John Weakland (Bateson, G., Jackson, D.D., Haley, J. & Weakland, J., 1956, Toward a theory of schizophrenia. Behavioral Science, Vol. 1, 251–264.)

MRI’s new mission will continue to support advancing interactional approaches to human problems through innovative research, education and practice by focusing on support for organizations and individuals. As a means to fund these initiatives and maximize its impact, the Mental Research Institute will create an endowment fund through the sale of its current building located at 555 Middlefield Road.

The momentum behind mental health in the 21stst century requires breakthrough thinking about how to increase systemic support and understanding of the processes that promote mental health and positive change in individuals, families and organizations. MRI intends to continue its leadership role as a major contributor to the study and application of interactional human systems and to continue its leadership role in supporting and stimulating innovative solutions to address interactional approaches to human problems.

Sophie Suberville
+1 650-321-3055
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