The family semantic polarities model, developed by Valeria Ugazio, inspires the greater part of the studies and theoretical research of our Institute. It is also a framework for researchers outside EIST. Ugazio’s recent work is aimed at developing specific therapeutic guidelines for couples therapy and for eating, phobic, obsessive-compulsive and mood disorders, the four psychopathologies at the centre of the family semantic polarities model. Laura Colangelo and Gabriella Gandino are now working on extending this model to personality disorders, in particular to borderline and narcissistic disorders.
EIST also carries out research on other topics: conversation analysis, of which Maurizio Viaro is an internationally renowned exponent; adoption, where Ferdinando Salamino and Elisa Gusmini have developed a stand point which is both divergent from the mainstream and effective for therapy; intra-family violence and its consequences on children where Lisa Fellin is mainly involved, along with Jane Callaghan. Some of EIST’s research programs concern typical themes of the systemic tradition such as triadic thinking. EIST is currently engaged in international research, including a program on intercultural couples, in collaboration with the London Intercultural Couple Center, directed by Reenee Singh.