Chapter 8

Expansion and international collaboration (1960–1965)

The creation of the Union, the improved organization of international congresses, the larger international participation, and the enthusiasm of the participants of the 14th and 15th congresses, particularly the one in Brussels, all contributed to the enhancement of psychologists’ confidence in the scientific character of their discipline. In spite of poor financial means at their disposal, the elected officials of the Union succeeded in gradually expanding the collaboration of international organizations as well as of member societies. There was still a long way to go, but progress was being made. The Executive Committee started to meet regularly between congresses in view of the increasing volume of Union activities and the need to monitor many issues closely. It was also necessary to frequently amend the Statutes of the Union to adapt to changes brought about by rapid growth.

The 16th International Congress of Psychology, Bonn, Federal Republic of Germany, 1960

As noted earlier, by the end of the 15th congress the Union had not received any invitation from a member society to host the 16th congress. The Executive Committee had been instructed to come to a decision at the earliest possible time.

In September 1957, the German Society of Psychology (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Psychologie) sent an invitation to the Union to hold its forthcoming congress in the Federal Republic of Germany. Sixty-four years had passed since the last meeting had taken place in a German-speaking country. The invitation was promptly accepted and the Executive Committee proposed that the congress be held under the presidency of Professor Johannes von Allesch of Göttingen. Eventually, for health reasons, von Allesch couldn’t assume the presidency (Montoro González, 1982 , p. 235). The 16th congress was held in Bonn, Federal Republic of Germany, from July 31 to August 6, 1960, under the presidency of Wolfgang Metzger, and the Honorary Presidency of Karl Bühler, who would have presided at the 12th congress if it had been held in Vienna in 1940 (Piéron, 1960 , p.620). Hans Thomae assumed the position of Secretary-General of the Congress, Udo Undeutsch acted as Treasurer, while Albert Wellek was in charge of the Program Committee.

Wolfgang Metzger (1899–1979): President of the 16th International Congress of Psychology, Bonn, 1960.

The sessions were held in the rooms of the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität and the Beethoven-Halle, in Bonn. Official governmental support was obtained from Gerhard Schroder, the Federal Minister of the Interior, from Werner Schutz, the Minister of Culture and Education of the Nordrhein-Westfalen State, from Max Braubach, Rector of the University of Bonn, and from the Lord Mayor of the City of Bonn, Wilhelm Daniels. The Minister of the Interior of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Minister of Cultural Affairs and Education of the State of Nordrhein-Westfalen also generously accepted to assume the costs of the publication of the proceedings of the congress, in collaboration with the IUSP. These proceedings were published in 1962 by North-Holland, but also as a special issue of the journal Acta Psychologica, similarly to the 15th congress.

Organization of the congress

The organization fell under the joint responsibility of the IUSP and the German Society of Psychology. Therefore the General Organizing Committee was composed of members appointed by both the IUSP and the German Society of Psychology, as can be seen in Table 8.1 .

The number of participants (1833, out of which 1116 were regular members) was greater than the number at the Brussels congress. For the first time in its history, the congress organization made use of modern technical facilities, such as simultaneous translation. All addresses, presentations, and discussions of the general meetings and, to some extent, of the individual meetings, were simultaneously translated into the three official languages of the congress—English, French, and German.

An informal welcoming ceremony by the Honorary President, the President, the Chair of the Program Committee, and the Secretary-General took place in the Beethoven-Halle on July 31, the night preceding the official opening, and it was followed by a reception. The opening ceremonies on the morning of August 1 began with the presentation of the well-known Toccata and Fugue in D-minor for Organ of Johann Sebastian Bach, and was followed by brief welcoming remarks from the President of the Congress, the Federal Minister of the Interior, the Minister of Cultural Affairs and Education of Nordrhein-Westfalen, the Rector of the University of Bonn, the Lord Mayor of the City of Bonn, as well as the President and the Secretary-General of the IUSP. The President of the congress, Wolfgang Metzger, then read his opening address (“Homage to Gustav Theodor Fechner”) in recognition of the centennial of the publication of Fechner’s well-known book “Elements of Psychophysics”. He was followed by the Honorary President, Karl Bühler, who gave the presidential address (“Gestalt in the lives of men and animals”).


Organizational structure of the 16th International Congress of Psychology (Bonn, 1960)

General Organizing Committee
President: Wolfgang Metzger
a. Members appointed by the International Union of Scientific Psychology
James Drever, Jr (UK)
Hubert C.J. Duijker (Netherlands)
Otto Klineberg (USA)
Noël Mailloux (Canada)
Albert Michotte (Belgium)
Joseph Nuttin (Belgium)
Jean Piaget (Switzerland)
Henri Piéron (France)
b. Members appointed by the German Society of Psychology
W. Arnold (University of Würzburg)
E. Boesch (University of Saabrücken)
H. von Bracken (University of Marburg)
H. Düker (University of Marburg)
R. Heiss (University of Freiburg)
P.R. Hofstatter (University of Hamburg)
I. Kohler (University of Innsbruck)
K. Mierke ( University of Kiel)
E. Rausch (University of Frankfurt)
J. Rudert (University of Heidelberg)
Th. Scharmann (University of Nürnberg)
K.S. Sodhi (University of Berlin)
W. Witte (University of Tübingen)
Program Committee
A. Wellek (University of Mainz) (Chair)
K. Gottschaldt (University of Berlin)
Ph. Lersch (University of München)
A. Mayer (University of Mannheim)
J. Nuttin (Université de Louvain)
H. Rohracher (University of Wien)
J. Rudert (University of Heidelberg)
H. Thomae (University of Bonn)
U. Undeutsch (University of Köln)

Scientific program

The Program Committee, under the chairmanship of Wellek, had its first preparatory meeting in Louvain in April 1959 together with some of the Brussels congress organizers. As had been done for the Brussels congress, the national psychological associations that were members of the Union, certain psychology departments and institutes of higher learning in various countries, as well as individual scholars, were asked to propose topical subjects. Out of these suggestions, 20 principal themes emerged, each to be treated in a symposium and, depending on the importance of the subject, by one or more discussion speakers (see Table 8.2 ). Individual presentations related to each main theme were also encouraged in order to address broader aspects. Because of the wide variety of individual papers submitted, eight more themes were added. Three public evening lectures were also added to the program, as well as four colloquia on special professional and organizational problems. There were small group discussions with invited guests. A book and equipment exhibition was arranged. The participants could take advantage of various visits, excursions, and social receptions during the congress. The traditional closing banquet was replaced by a boat trip up the Rhine river to Linz, an old wine town near Neuwied.


Scientific program themes: 16th International Congress of Psychology (Bonn, 1960)

Microgenesis of perception
Theory and critique of projective tests
Problems of the aging personality
Instinct behavior
Scaling problems in psychophysics
The problem of the “ego” in motivation
Differential psychology of adolescence
Perceptual learning
Mathematical models in psychology
Effects of affective deprivation in children
Interaction processes in small groups
Problems of the theory of expression
The phenomenological approach in psychology
Perception and information theory
Problems of interpersonal perception
Origin and development of national stereotypes in children
Psychology of religion
Language and comprehension
Personality and perception
Drugs as research tools in psychology
Problems of method
Physiological psychology
Problems of perception
Clinical psychology
Social psychology
Behavior under stress
Time perspectives
Lectures with demonstrations

The following evening presentations were open to the general public:

The colloquia dealt with the following issues:

  1. Social sciences, psychology, and mental health: The role of the psychologist in World Mental Health Year.
  2. Problems of cooperation between psychology and psychopathology.
  3. Means of international exchange among psychologists speaking different languages.
  4. The legal status and responsibility of psychologists in different countries.

In the summary account of the congress (Proceedings of the XVIth International Congress of Psychology, 1962 , p. XXVIII), we find the following conclusion, which synthesizes the significant contribution of the Bonn congress:

It is still too early to give a complete appreciation of the
success of the congress or to expect immediate practical
results from it, just as it was the case after the Brussels
Congress. Yet, there can be no doubt that the use of the latest
technical facilities, those mentioned above (i.e. simultaneous
translation) and the rotaprint method—at the beginning of
the Congress each participant was given two volumes
containing summary accounts of the talks—as well as the
record participation will be milestones in the history of the
International Congress and will certainly be conducive to
fruitfully shaping its progressive development, structure and

General Assembly, Bonn 1960

As was the case in Brussels 3 years before, the General Assembly of IUSP met during two sessions, just before and right after the congress.

Reports of the Officers

The first meeting of the Assembly was held on July 31. After the usual roll call, which indicated that delegates from national societies from 17 countries were present (Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, USSR, UK, and USA) as well as an observer, Dr N. Leites, of the Social Sciences Division of UNESCO, the meeting was opened by the President of the Union. After the adoption of the provisional agenda, Secretary-General Klineberg gave his report. He first mentioned the upcoming publication in German and Spanish of Perspectives in Personality Theory (Eds.: H. David & H. von Bracken) and the publication in English of Perspectives in Personality Research (Eds.: H. David & J.C. Brengelmann). He also indicated that H.C.J. Duijker had prepared for IUSP a trend report on “National Character and National Stereotypes” that would soon be published under the auspices of the International Committee for Social Science Information and Documentation. He further mentioned that the Union would be sponsoring (1) a symposium and research project on the origins and development of national stereotypes in children (conducted in 10 different countries by W.E. Lambert from Canada), (2) an attitude survey among young people on the peaceful uses of atomic energy, (3) a meeting in New York (in collaboration with UNESCO) on the use of psychological concepts in other social sciences. In view of the expected increase of UNESCO support, the Secretary-General suggested that there should be a meeting of the Executive Committee between congresses and that larger contributions should be available for the increasing activities of the Union.

Treasurer Mailloux presented his report on the Union’s financial status, which indicated a small, but favorable balance on hand, as well as a reserve fund of about US$5000 for support of international congresses. He raised the issue of nonpayment of annual dues to the Union and it was decided to consider this problem when revising the statutes. He announced an increase of the UNESCO grant to IUSP (US$6000 in 1961) and it was decided that the final general budget for 1961 should be prepared by the officers of the Union according to the following formula: approximately one third for administrative purposes, one third for activities of the Executive Committee, and one third for other activities of the Union.

Review of the Statutes

In the discussion that accompanied the presentation of a draft revision of the Statutes, the following points received particular attention: (1) it was voted to move certain items concerning ways in which the Union conducts its business to a new document entitled “Rules of Procedure”; (2) a proposal to remove the adjective “scientific” from the name of the Union was not accepted at that time, because there still remained in many countries the need to differentiate “scientific psychology” from other uses of “psychology,” but it was agreed to reconsider the issue in the future; (3) a proposal to change the representation of national societies on the IUSP Assembly by allowing a maximum of four representatives based upon the size of membership of a national society was not accepted, but the Revision Committee was asked to determine what should be the precise size of membership required for an appointment of two representatives; (4) the issue of whether or not the delegates should represent their personal views or the views of their national societies was resolved by adding the provision to the statutes that at least 3 months’ notice of the business to be transacted at a meeting of the General Assembly would be required in the future; all new issues, raised after this period, would be placed on the agenda only if supported by a two thirds majority vote of the delegates present; (5) in view of the fact that national societies were sometimes delinquent in the payment of their annual dues, the Ad Hoc Revision Committee was instructed to draft a statement regarding grounds for termination of membership; and (6) the Ad Hoc Committee was also instructed to draft a formal section in the Statutes recognizing the affiliations already voted upon at the last meeting.

During the next session, the Ad Hoc Committee appointed during the first session to redraft some of the revised statutes made its report. All its recommendations regarding the nature and aims of the Union, the affiliation, and its administration were approved. Questions were raised regarding the election of Executive Committee members. It was decided to fill vacancies on the Executive Committee between General Assemblies through a mail ballot vote, to have 8 of the 10 members chosen from among members of the Assembly, and that not more than 2 members of the Committee be from any one country. Adraft was presented of the new Rules of Procedure for the Assembly that included three major sections, i.e. organization of international congresses, subscriptions, and nominations. While the first and last sections were adopted unanimously, the second section, particularly the requirement for a vote of a two-thirds majority to alter the rate of subscriptions, caused considerable discussion and was finally adopted by a small majority.

Establishment of a Committee on Communication and Publications

On the issue of the publication of Psychological Abstracts that had been raised during the Brussels meeting, and more broadly speaking on the problems of international communications in scientific psychology, Russell presented a report in which he recommended the establishment by the Union of a Committee on Communication and Publications. This was approved unanimously by the Assembly, as was a motion to have each national society nominate one of its members to serve as an advisor to the editor of Psychological Abstracts.

Following the establishment in Brussels of a committee to advise on the desirability of preparing future editions of the International Directory of Psychologists, it was decided that future editions should appear at regular intervals of 3 years, that an editorial committee be established to oversee the production of this directory, that one or more editors be appointed by the Executive Committee to assume responsibility for each new edition, and that all national societies appoint someone responsible for supplying the information on their members.

Election of the Executive Committee

As stipulated in the Statutes, the Assembly proceeded with the elections. Klineberg was elected President, and Duijker, Vice-President. Those elected to the Executive Committee were: Drever, Fraisse, Leontiev, Mailloux, Nuttin, Piaget, Russell, Sato, Skard, and Westerlund.

Membership issues

The applications of South Africa, Mexico, and Venezuela for membership in the Union were considered. Whereas South Africa was turned down because barriers prevented the participation in the South African Society of psychologists of all races, those of Mexico and Venezuela, which had been received just prior to the congress, were postponed for lack of sufficient information, especially concerning the representativeness of the societies applying. A similar request by the International Council of Psychologists for affiliation with the Union was postponed.

Relations with the International Council of Scientific Unions

The relations with the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU) and the difficulties encountered by the failures of applications for membership were discussed. It was believed that the two main reasons for these failures were (1) that ICSU is traditionally slow in granting approval of new memberships, and (2) that present members of ICSU were perhaps fearful that any new addition might decrease the level of funds available to ICSU members. It was nevertheless decided to reapply for admission in 1961, to ask Leonard Carmichael to represent IUSP in the formal discussion of this application, and to make clear to ICSU that IUSP would neither request financial support nor contribute financially to ICSU.

Choice of the venue for the next congress

The Assembly was pleased to accept an invitation from the American Psychological Association to hold the next International Congress of Psychology in the United States in 1963.

Executive Committee meeting, Bonn 1960

Roger Russell (1914–1998): Secretary-General of the IUSP (1960–1966); President of the IUSP (1969–1972).

The 1960 meeting of the Executive Committee was held in two sessions: one on July 31 and the second immediately following adjournment of the Assembly on August 6. The first session, termed “outgoing”, was devoted principally to discussion of items to be considered during the forthcoming Assembly, especially the changes in the Statutes.

At the second session, the incoming session, all newly elected members were present and the first item of business was the appointment of Russell as Secretary-General, Westerlund as Deputy Secretary-General, and Mailloux as Treasurer.

A discussion of the ways in which IUSP might better cooperate with UNESCO was held in the presence of a UNESCO observer, Dr Szczerba-Likiernik. Acertain number of specific projects involving both organizations were discussed and considered possible. Among these were the preparation of interdisciplinary trend reports, the organization of symposia or round-table conferences, technical assistance to economically underdeveloped countries, and assistance to university projects in Africa.

The discussion on the allocations of the 1961 budget for specific activities was introduced by the Treasurer and it was finally decided that the final figures would be decided by the President and the other officers of the Union.

In view of the Assembly’s decision to establish a Committee on Communication and Publications, it was decided that the following persons should be invited to serve as members of this new committee: L. Ancona, H.C.J. Duijker, P. Fraisse, A. Luria, A. Melton, J. Nuttin, R.W. Russell (ex-officio), K. Sato, A. Summerfield, G. Westerlund, and W. Witte. Duijker agreed to serve as the first chairman. A subcommittee composed of Eugene H. Jacobson and Arthur Summerfield was appointed to take responsibility for the preparation of the International Directory of Psychologists.

The desirability of holding a meeting of the Executive Committee at some convenient time between the 1960 and 1963 congresses was discussed, but no decision was taken.

Executive Committee meeting, Paris 1962

The Executive Committee meeting was held on July 9–11, 1962. It was attended by Drever, Duijker, Fraisse, Leontiev, Mailloux, Nuttin, Piaget, Russell, Sato, Skard, and Westerlund, and chaired by the President, Otto Klineberg.

After approving the minutes of the 1960 Executive Committee meeting in Bonn and reiterating that the members of the committee were not representing particular national societies, but were acting on their own behalf, the Secretary-General, Roger Russell, made a report in which he raised the following issues: membership requirements, Union representation, affiliation with ICSU, production of a newsletter, International Congress of Applied Psychology, and a full-time Executive Secretary.

Membership requirements and issues

In the light of the new statutory membership requirements adopted at the 1960 Assembly meeting, principles of membership in the Union were discussed, taking up the case of Brazil. It appeared that, in Brazil, there was a rivalry between several psychology societies and that it was not clear what criteria were used for the admission of members. The situation was further complicated by the fact that since Brazil’s election as a member in 1957, no dues had been received. It was decided to inform the Brazilian Society of the difficulties noted and to give them notice that, in accordance with the possibility of terminating their membership after nonpayment of three annual dues (Art. 9b of the Statutes), a decision to that effect would be taken at the 1963 Assembly meeting. It was also agreed that non-member national groups, and in particular India, China, Mexico, Austria, Thailand, and Romania, should be contacted by members of the Executive Committee to encourage them to apply for membership. For coordination purposes, the Secretary-General would be kept informed of all actions taken.

Two national societies, South Africa and Venezuela, which had recently applied for membership, were accepted, while the application of the Czechoslovakian Society was deferred to the 1963 Assembly meeting.

The Executive Committee approved terminating the membership of Cuba and Egypt in the Union.

Relations with other organizations

The Union was invited with increasing frequency to send a representative to various meetings of UNESCO and ISSC, as well as that of other organizations in whose activities the Union was interested. A general principle of representation was approved, whereby it was stipulated that the Union should be present at as many meetings as possible. Whenever possible, senior psychologists should be asked to serve as Union representatives. Joseph Nuttin was appointed as the new Union representative to the ISSC for a period of 3 years in place of Jean Piaget.

In the presence of Dr Szczerba-Likiernik, the Secretary-General of ISSC, Westerlund reported on his activities as representative to ISSC. The committee was pleased with the useful relations that had been established with ISSC and agreed that the relationship should be developed further. The recent changes in the ISSC statutes, which had resulted in ISSC becoming a “federation of societies in the social sciences,” were presented. It was noted that ISSC was becoming more interdisciplinary and more concerned with the promotion of research.

Miss de Franz, representing UNESCO, discussed her organization’s interest in projects in which the Union might be of assistance. Inter alia, UNESCO would be interested in exploring research methods and techniques applicable in demographic and statistical studies in countries that lacked such basic data, and second, it would also be interested in the development of good teaching materials for educational purposes in Africa. It was suggested that the Secretary-General should make an inventory of African psychologists involved in research or applied areas and that the Treasurer prepare a report on psychological aspects of problems of delinquency in newly developing countries.

A resolution had been circulated in advance by the Swiss Society of Psychology to all members of the committee regarding the possible role of the Union in international affairs. Comments would be requested from National Members on questions such as: (1) Should IUSP make a common approach to all governments and to the United Nations? (2) What kind of unique services can IUSP offer? (3) How should an approach to governments and the United Nations be made in order to maximize its success? (4) To what extent should IUSP consult with national societies regarding the details of their specific approaches? The Executive Committee, at its upcoming meeting in Washington in 1963, determined to examine the comments made by the members and organize a small working conference on these issues.

Concerning the ongoing efforts to have the Union admitted to ICSU, it was agreed to ask Leonard Carmichael (USA) to represent the Union in further contacts with ICSU with the assistance, if necessary, of Fraisse, Klineberg, and Piaget.


Although difficulties were experienced in receiving information from national societies, it was the view of the committee that the Newsletter, regardless of its completeness, should come out regularly, beginning with the 1962 Autumn issue.

Duijker reported on the activities of the Committee on Communication and Publications. The Executive Committee approved the following recommendations: (1) that an Ad Hoc International Committee should be established and composed of Piéron, Thomae, and Solman to assist with the preparation of the new Lexicon, and (2) that the feasibility should be explored of obtaining from national societies summaries in French or English of all articles published in psychology journals. The selection and translation of important articles from the non-English literature was also discussed. The status of the research project on “The Origin and Development of National Stereotypes” was discussed and it was expected that a final manuscript would be ready by 1963.

Planning of the next congress

Questions were raised concerning the considerable overlap between the programs of the last congresses of IUSP and IAAP, and leading to the recommendation that the possibility of coordinating the planning of both congresses should be explored.

The Executive Committee heard a report from Carl Pfaffmann on the American Psychological Association’s (APA) plans for the 1963 International Congress in Washington. The committee urged the APA to send out, at its earliest convenience, the information on the general organization of the congress so that all those interested in attending could make plans well in advance. It was recommended that the working languages of the congress should be French and English and that simultaneous translation should be provided. It was also recommended that presentation of papers should be permitted in German, Italian, Russian, and Spanish. APA’s novel idea of a “Young Psychologists’ Program” was very well received and it was decided unanimously that IUSP should provide a sum of US$500 as a token contribution to this program.

Regarding the international exchange of psychologists, a review was presented of the project originated by APA for the collection and dissemination of information on international opportunities for advanced training and research in psychology. The cooperation of IUSP in the conduct of the project had been approved by the Executive Committee in February 1962.

Review of Statutes

Issues were raised on the interpretation to be given to certain new IUSP Statutes. Although the Executive Committee was elected by the Assembly, its members did not serve as delegates of their national societies. After the proceedings and decisions of the Executive Committee were communicated to them by the Secretary-General, they should feel free to report back to the national society to which they belonged. Regarding the issue of voting by correspondence on elections to membership in the Union, two possible rules of procedure could be considered: (1) following a discussion at the Assembly, the President may approve a final vote by mail ballot, and (2) if a question is raised regarding a vote by correspondence, the issue could go to the Assembly for its consideration. Furthermore, regarding voting by correspondence, each mail ballot should contain three options: approve, disapprove, or postpone a decision until the next Assembly meeting.

The 17th International Congress of Psychology, Washington, USA, 1963

Organization of the congress

The 17th International Congress of Psychology was organized by the American Psychological Association and took place in Washington, DC, from August 20 to 26, 1963, at the Mayflower Hotel. Otto Klineberg was President and Edwin G. Boring was Honorary President. Table 8.3 presents the main organizers of this congress.

The total registration (members and associates) reached 1902, including approximately 600 participants from abroad (Piéron, 1963 , p. 597) representing 45 different countries . An innovation of particular interest at this congress was the introduction of the “Young Psychologists’ Program”. Twenty-two promising young psychologists, one from nearly every member society of the Union who, by and large, would have been unable to attend this meeting, were nominated by their own society and received a travel grant donated by individual American psychologists, or by professional societies and other organizations. The Union also contributed to this fund. The goal of the organizers was that “both the youthful vigor of our science (as well as) international cooperation and understanding (would) be fostered” (Proceedings of the XVIIth International Congress of Psychology, 1964 , p.v.).

17th Congress, Washington, 1963: Congress participants outside the venue.


Organizational structure: 17th International Congress of Psychology (Washington, 1963)

Steering Committee
Carl Pfaffmann, Chair, Brown University
Eugene Jacobson, Vice-Chair, Michigan State University
Charles W. Bray, Chair, Local Arrangements Committee, Smithsonian Institution
Leonard Carmichael, Smithsonian Institution
Meredith Crawford, Chair, Finance Committee, Human Resources Research Office, Alexandria
Henry P. David, Dept of Institutions & Agencies, State of New Jersey
George Ferguson, McGill University
Robert MacLeod, Cornell University
Donald G. Marquis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Program Committee
Donald G. Marquis, Chair, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Daniel Katz, Vice-Chair, University of Michigan
Clyde H. Coombs, University of Michigan
George Kelly, Ohio State University
Donald B. Lindsley, University of California, Los Angeles
Robert MacLeod, Cornell University
Noël Mailloux, Université de Montréal

Financial support for the congress came from multiple sources, including the American Council of Learned Societies, the National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Mental Health. The first meeting of the Steering Committee took place in Washington, on December 17, 1960. John Darley, at that time Executive Officer of APA, participated actively in the early planning, and his successor, Arthur Brayfield continued his support.

The opening session of the congress was held on Tuesday evening, August 20, followed by a reception. Dr John T. Wilson, a psychologist recently appointed Deputy Director of the National Science Foundation, brought to the congress words of greetings from the President of the United States. González Solaz (1998 , pp. 105–106) notes with surprise that these presidential greetings, reproduced in the congress proceedings (Proceedings of the XVIIth International Congress of Psychology, 1964 , pp. 2–3), are specifically oriented toward the field of mental retardation. After welcome addresses by Carl Pfaffmann, Leonard Carmichael, Charles Osgood (the President of APA), and Otto Klineberg, Edwin Boring gave the presidential address entitled “Eponym as placebo.”

Scientific program

Thirty-three symposia constituted the core of the scientific program. They covered topics of current interest in psychology, ranging from psychophysiology to personality and social psychology. There were also 12 sessions of submitted papers. Table 8.4 lists the topics of the symposia.

Four distinguished psychologists presented evening lectures: Gordon W. Allport (“The Fruits of Eclecticism: Bitter or Sweet?”), Jerzy Konorski (“On the Mechanisms of Instrumental Conditioning”), Ivo Kohler (“The Concept of Adaptation in Perception”), and Joseph Nuttin (“Time Perspective in Human Motivation and Learning”).

Many visits were arranged for the participants. They included the National Institute of Mental Health, the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, St Elizabeth’s Hospital, and the Smithsonian Institution. Social activities, such as a tour of the White House, an evening at the National Gallery of Art, a picnic at the Woodland Plantation, and a boat trip to Mount Vernon, were also arranged for the enjoyment of the congress participants. It must be noted that all participants from abroad were invited, at least once, to dinner in the home of one of their American colleagues.


Symposia themes: 17th International Congress of Psychology (Washington, 1963)

Human motivation
Behavior genetics
Critical periods in development
Development of the cognitive processes
Regulation and control of sensory functions
Personality change in psychotherapy
Personality assessment
Psychophysiology of motivation
Language and the science of man
Social development of the child
Biochemical correlates of behavior
The historical background for national trends in psychology
Cross-cultural studies of attitude structure and dimensions
Temporal aspects of perception and performance
Psychology and the humanities
Choice and decision
Creativity and the growth of concepts
The body percept
Psychophysics and the ideal observer
Social psychological studies of international behavior
New technologies in education
Small groups and interpersonal process
Sleep and wakefulness
Mathematical behavior theory
Personality: theories and systems
Uses of computers in psychology
Brain and visual perception
Attitude consistency and change
Information processing and performance
Mental retardation and special defects
Multidimensional analysis of similarity data
Neurophysiology of learning
System theory and organization change

General Assembly, Washington 1963

The meeting of August 20 was brought to order by President Klineberg, in the presence of representatives of the national societies of 15 countries (Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, USSR, USA) and of observers from the International Association of Applied Psychology and the International Sociological Association.

Reports of the Officers

The President reported briefly on his activities during his tour of office. The Secretary-General reviewed the accomplishments of the Union during the 1960–1963 period. He mentioned the completion of a revision of the IUSP’s Statutes and the creation of “Rules of Procedure.” Also of importance were the interactions of IUSP with other organizations, especially UNESCO and ISSC. During the previous 3 years, five publications had been sponsored by IUSP: (1) the Proceedings of the Bonn Congress, 1960, (2) a German language edition of Perspectives in Personality Theory, (3) Perspectives in Personality Research, (4) National Character and National Stereotypes, and (5) a report of the La Napoule Planning Conference of the APA. Also, six special projects had received particular attention: (1) Public opinion regarding the peaceful uses of atomic energy, (2) Research on the origins and development of national stereotypes, (3) the Lexicon of Psychological Terms, (4) Psychological terms used in other social sciences, (5) a revision of the International Directory of Psychologists, and (6) International opportunities for advanced training and research in psychology. The Secretary-General also presented basic questions that he felt the Union should consider at this point in its development: Should it continue to operate as in the past, or organize itself for an expanded program of activities? This latter alternative would require a reevaluation of the Union’s present administrative structure. He also raised the need for the development of the Union’s activities in the area of biological psychology.

Letter to Otto Klineberg, President of the 19th International Congress, from President John F. Kennedy.

A general discussion followed this report and it was suggested to promote biological psychology first by publishing a book on Perspectives in Biological Psychology and, second, by organizing colloquia or small scientific meetings to enhance more systematic development in this area. It was also suggested that the name of the Union be changed by deleting the adjective “scientific,” since psychology was now firmly established as a science. Continued use of “scientific” could be perceived as a sign of insecurity in this regard. The matter was deferred to the Executive Committee. Finally, in the light of the increase in the activities of the Union, it was decided that the Executive Committee should meet more often, and at least once before the next congress.

The report of the Treasurer indicated that the general account of the Union had a small favorable balance at this point and that expenditures from funds provided by UNESCO were being made as budgeted.

Next congress venue

The Assembly was delighted to receive an invitation from the Soviet Psychological Association to hold the 1966 International Congress in Moscow and unanimously gave its approbation.

Elections of the Executive Committee

Drever was elected as President, while Fraisse was elected as Vice-President of the Executive Committee.

At the second session of the Assembly meeting, held on August 25, 1963, the first item on the agenda was the election of the Executive Committee. In view of the increasing membership in the Union, and in conformity with the statutes, it was decided to appoint the Secretary-General and the Treasurer and to elect 10 additional Executive Committee members. The tradition had been thus far to appoint the Treasurer and the Secretary-General from among the elected committee members. It was thus suggested by the Assembly that Roger W. Russell and Noël Mailloux be appointed respectively Secretary-General and Treasurer. Those elected to the new Executive Committee were: Duijker, Klineberg, Leontiev, Nuttin, O’Neil, Piaget, Sato, Summerfield, Tomaszewski, and Westerlund.

International collaborations

In the ongoing effort to obtain membership in ICSU and in view of the little progress made, Carmichael was asked to act as the IUSP’s “official ambassador” and, with the help of Pfaffmann, an APA representative, to continue actively seeking membership in ICSU during the 1963–66 period.

The Assembly heard a report by Sherman Ross of APA concerning the APA-IUSP project of collecting and disseminating information on international opportunities for advanced training and research in psychology. A meeting on this project had been held in July 1962 in La Napoule, France, and a two-volume report had been published by the APA. This report contained a number of suggestions for action by the IUSP. An Ad Hoc Committee was created to review these suggestions and report back to the Assembly.

Actions taken concerning the Swiss resolution on the contributions of psychology to the reduction of international tensions were discussed and the papers prepared by some of the national members on this topic were reviewed by the ad hoc group (Fraisse, Klineberg and Piaget) appointed by the Executive Committee. Approval was granted to convene a small working conference on the issues raised.

Report on the congress

Carl Pfaffmann, Chair of the APA Steering Committee, reported on the success of the 1963 International Congress of Psychology. One of the new features deserving particular attention was the Young Psychologists’ Program, which had been very successful. It was agreed that this program be continued in future years. Pfaffmann called attention to the wide range of topics covered by the congress program and emphasized the fact that contributions within each topic clearly showed psychology to be “an empirically-based science with very active and challenging frontiers of discovery which overlap both the biological and the social sciences” (IUSP Assembly Minutes, 1963). Deep appreciation was expressed to the American Psychological Association for subsidizing the attendance of so many participants from countries abroad and for the outstanding success of the Washington congress.

Membership issues

The increasing interest shown by national societies of psychology in becoming members of the Union was noted. Hence, the Czechoslovakian Society was elected to membership, and new applications from three national societies were presented: the German Democratic Republic, Peru, and the Philippines. However, the Assembly had to consider with deep regret the necessity of terminating the membership of certain national societies for nonpayment of dues. The Cuban and Egyptian societies were given until the end of the year to make their payment. If the dues were not paid by that time, it was decided that their membership would be terminated. The case for the Brazilian Society, which had not paid its dues since 1957, was further complicated by the fact that a second society of psychologists had developed in this country. It was decided to terminate the membership of the first, the Sociedade Brasileira de Psicologia, but to support the application of the second, the Associacao Brasileira de Psicologos, in view of information that the first would merge into the second. Also approved was the change of membership for Venezuela; the present member, the Associacion Venezolana de Psicologos, had been integrated into the newly founded Colegio de Psicologos de Venezuela. The request of the International Council of Psychologists for affiliation with the Union (as made possible by Article 10 of the Statutes) was approved, after reviewing the information that had been requested concerning the objectives, activities, and constitution of the council. The request for affiliation of the Madras Psychological Society in India was, however, turned down, since the term “regional” indicated in the affiliation statutes was considered to be related to groups of nations within a particular geographical area and not to provinces within a country.

Executive Committee meeting, Washington 1963

During its first session, on August 20, the Executive Committee, under the chairmanship of Otto Klineberg, reviewed the agenda of the upcoming Assembly meetings. Suggestions were made regarding the procedure for the nomination of candidates to the offices of President and Vice-President.

The budget for 1964, totaling expenses of US$6000, was examined and approved. In reply to a request from the South African Psychological Association, it was agreed that the IUSP would participate in the ICSU International Biological Program, as a means of establishing closer relations.

The rules for voting by mail ballot, discussed at the 1962 meeting, were considered and adopted. On the matter of membership issues, it was agreed to recommend to the Assembly that the membership of the Sociedade Brasileira de Psicologia, presently representing Brazil, be terminated for nonpayment of dues and that the application of the Associacao Brasileira de Psicologos be considered. It was also agreed to recommend termination of the Cuban and Egyptian societies for nonpayment of dues, with the provision that they could reapply if they so wished. The admission of the Czechoslovakian Society was approved and would be recommended to the Assembly. The Executive Committee agreed to add to the agenda the application of the International Council of Psychologists for affiliation.

At its second session, all the newly elected members of the Executive Committee were present, with Drever acting as President. The first item of business was the appointment of a Secretary-General (Roger Russell), a Deputy Secretary-General (Gunnar Westerlund), and a Treasurer (Noël Mailloux), following the recommendations of the Assembly. Hubert Duijker was reappointed Chair of the Committee on Communication and Publications.

Actions on recommendation of the Assembly

Following a recommendation from the Assembly, the committee decided unanimously that the name of the Union be changed from “International Union of Scientific Psychology” to “International Union of Psychological Sciences” (and in French, “Union internationale des sciences psychologiques”). But first, this proposal would have to be sent to Assembly members for a mail ballot vote.

As requested at the 1962 meeting, Mailloux presented a report on the psychological aspects of the problems of delinquency in newly developing countries. He was asked to examine the feasibility of a more specific project proposal for consideration by the committee.

At the suggestion of the Assembly, it was decided to hold a meeting of the Executive Committee in Europe in 1964 following the 15th International Congress of Applied Psychology, in order to take advantage of the fact that a certain number of members would already be present and would therefore be available at minimum travel cost.

Next congresses

The nomination of Moscow, USSR, as the congress venue for 1966 having received the approval of the General Assembly, Fraisse was appointed liaison to the Soviet Society’s Program Committee and it was decided that the official languages of the 1966 congress would be English, French, and Russian. Since a tentative invitation had been made by the British Psychological Society (BPS) to hold the 1969 congress in the United Kingdom and by the Japanese Psychological Association to hold the 1972 congress in Japan, the Secretary-General was instructed to request a mail ballot vote from Assembly members regarding the BPS proposal; if this vote was positive, the BPS could then begin planning for the 1969 congress.

Discussion of the excessive duplication of functions and the necessary coordination of the international congresses sponsored by the Union and by the International Association of Applied Psychology led to the conclusion that, although there is some degree of overlap, there is no need for concern because the two congresses will continue to have differences in emphasis and in the interests of attendees.

International collaborations

The Union’s interest in pursuing research projects in both Africa and Asia was discussed and potential sources of funding were identified.

Relations with UNESCO were reviewed and the important role that UNESCO subventions play in helping to maintain continued stability in the Union’s administration and scientific activities was reiterated.

Regarding the relations with the United Nations, some uncertainty was expressed as to the role that the Union should seek to play. This issue was raised through correspondence with representatives of the Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

An Ad Hoc Committee composed of Fraisse, Klineberg, and Westerlund was appointed to contribute to the upcoming ISSC report on the general trends of research in the social sciences.

The idea of supporting an ISSC proposal for a “World Social Science Year” was closely examined and it was deemed premature, in view of the amount of activity and the level of efforts that such a project could require. Since the idea originated from the Australian UNESCO Committee for Social Science, O’Neil was asked to explore further this issue with his compatriots, reporting back to the Executive Committee.

To complete the review of the 1964 budget proposal presented during the first session of the Executive Committee meeting, it was agreed to specify in greater detail the support to be given to special scientific projects. The three current research projects were: “Reduction of international tensions”; the ISSC project on “Current trends in social science research”; and the preparation of a third Perspectives volume that would cover topics in biological psychology. Up to US$1000 of the Union funds would also be used to complete the Lexicon of Psychological Terms project.

Executive Committee meeting, Bellagio, Italy, 1964

The Executive Committee meeting was held July 27–29 at the Villa Serbelloni in Bellagio, Italy. The roll call indicated that all members were present, with the exception of Klineberg, who would join the meeting on July 29.

Reports of the Officers

The report of the President raised an important issue: the relations of IUSP with UNESCO. It was believed that it was not a UNESCO responsibility to support IUSP congresses, but that it should be prepared to subsidize the Union’s international projects that met with its approval. The necessity of seeking and obtaining membership in ICSU was once again noted as a priority.

Duijker, Chair of the Committee on Communication and Publications, reported on the two ongoing projects. The preparation of the International Directory of Psychologists was progressing well, thanks to Eugene Jacobson’s efforts in collecting data from countries with no psychological association. The second main project, the Trilingual Lexicon, was expected to be finished during the 1964–65 academic year.

The Treasurer presented his report. No changes were anticipated in the US$6000 level of UNESCO support for the 1965–66 subvention, and a provisional budget was approved.

Membership issues

After the presentation of his yearly financial statement, Mailloux opened a discussion on membership issues. He indicated that he received no replies from Cuba or Egypt regarding the termination of their membership. It was decided that the Brazilian and the Philippines memberships should be confirmed by mail vote but that the application of the Indian Psychological Association be acted upon at the next Assembly meeting. The committee was informed that an application from Romania had been made and that a request was received from West Germany for the approval of the new Federation of German Psychological Associations as representing both the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Psychologie and the Berufsverband Deutscher Psychologen. The potential memberships of Ireland, the German Democratic Republic, Hungary, Pakistan, and Peru were examined.

Recommendation for change of name

A mail ballot had given 26 votes for and 5 against the change of the name of the Union. After some discussion, it was decided to call for another mail ballot of the Assembly on the following recommendation: “that the names of the Union are the International Union of Psychological Sciences and l’Union Internationale de Psychologie Scientifique, both names being considered equivalent.”

Next congresses

With regard to the preparation of the 1966 Congress in Moscow, Leontiev reported that the organization of the congress was in progress. The Program Committee was under the direction of Luria, while the Organization Committee and the Secretariat were the responsibility of Smirnov. With regard to the program, two symposia were to be held in parallel during the morning and the afternoon sessions, and there would be two series of individual communications, two plenary meetings, with opening and closing sessions. The first circular of information regarding the congress would be sent out in September 1964.

The results of a mail ballot vote indicated that 29 votes were in favor of accepting the invitation from the British Psychological Society to hold the 1969 Congress in the UK, while 1 vote asked for a postponement until the next Assembly meeting. The Executive Committee decided to accept the British invitation, thus enabling them to start working immediately. It was also decided to change the rule of procedure so that venues of future congresses should be discussed 6, rather than 3, years in advance.

International exchange program and other projects

Russell reported on the APA-IUSP project regarding the international exchange of psychologists. The discussion raised the problem of the screening of the students to be involved. It was recommended that a system equating educational systems of different countries be set up and that the decisions made at La Napoule be followed up.

Among other issues raised were: Mailloux’s report on the psychological aspects of problems of delinquency in newly developing countries, Tomaszewski’s proposal for an international program of psychological research, Russell’s reports on the Union’s interest in African studies, Mailloux’s report on Asian studies, and Russell’s report on the International Biological program.

Publication of a journal

A working group composed of Fraisse, Leontiev, Nuttin, Piaget, Sato, Tomaszewski, and Westerlund, chaired by Duijker, reported on the need for the development of an IUSP periodical. This journal would be the Union’s “house organ” and would replace the aperiodic Newsletter which was no longer capable of meeting the expressed need of the national societies and of the Union for communication on the various activities in which IUSP was now engaged. It was suggested that the contents of the journal deal mainly with the following areas: (1) reports of international research, preferably of a comparative and cooperative nature, (2) information on psychological activities of an international nature and interest, including news from national societies of psychology, (3) reports on IUSP’s activities and issues that concern it, (4) notices of international projects requiring personnel specialized in various areas of psychology, and (5) information to facilitate the exchange of advanced scholars and students interested in acquiring knowledge and skills in the various applied fields of psychology. It was recommended that this journal be published in both official languages of the Union: English and French. It was suggested that a name such as “The World Psychologist” or “The International Journal of Psychology” be given to this journal and that the editorial responsibility be given to an assigned editor and a Board of Consulting Editors, all elected by the IUSP’s Assembly. Other publications, e.g. monographs on subjects related to projects endorsed by IUSP, should also be produced. The overall objective of IUSP publications should be to strive for the creation of a general climate in international psychology that would encourage comparative and cooperative research and facilitate a broad exchange of psychological information.

Executive Committee meeting, Royaumont, France, 1965

The Executive Committee meeting was held in Royaumont, France, from June 1 to June 3, with all members present. After approval of the minutes of the 1964 meeting in Bellagio, Italy, President Drever reported briefly on the major events arising since the last meeting and stressed the urgent need for establishing a permanent secretariat of the Union. Both the Secretary-General and the Treasurer then read their annual reports referring to documents already circulated that had been prepared in compliance with UNESCO’s subvention program requirements. Satisfactory progress had been made in all the funded projects, and the Treasurer added that the Union account held a small, but favorable balance. A budget of operations amounting to US$10,500, funded mostly from UNESCO subventions, was proposed and adopted.

Publications program

The Chair of the Committee on Communication and Publications, Duijker, reported mainly on two major projects. He indicated that the first draft of the Trilingual Lexicon of Psychological Terms had undergone a substantial second revision and that every effort would be made to publish it as early as possible. In the case of the second project, the International Directory of Psychologists, questionnaires were still being received. Plans were to go to press in September or October 1965. Unfortunately, the major problem of inclusion of information about psychologists in the People’s Republic of China had not been successfully resolved. Therefore, the new edition would not include information about Chinese psychologists. The possibility of employing computer procedures for future editions was discussed and it was decided to explore this option further.

In 1964, the Executive Committee allocated US$3000 to support the first year of the newly approved publication, to be called The International Journal of Psychology. The first issue would appear before the 1966 International Congress if possible. Fraisse agreed to serve as acting Editor, with the editorial assistance of his colleague Germaine de Montmollin. The Union’s Executive Committee would constitute the first Editorial Board.

Membership issues

Membership issues were, as usual, an important part of the agenda. It was first noted that the mail vote on the admission of the Philippines was favorable and therefore the Psychological Association of the Philippines was officially accepted as a member. The applications of the Psychological Society of the German Democratic Republic, the Indian Psychological Association, the Romanian Psychological Society, the new Federation of German Psychological Associations, and the Mexican Psychological Society were deemed acceptable and referred for a vote at the 1966 meeting of the General Assembly. The committee also noted that the membership of the Australian Branch of the British Psychological Society would be changed to a membership of the Australian Psychological Society as of January, 1966.

Approval of a new name for the Union

The Executive Committee examined the returns from the mail ballot of the Assembly regarding the name of the Union and noted that the recommended change had been approved. Therefore, the new English name of the Union from now on is: “International Union of Psychological Science” (IUPS), while the French name is: “l’Union Internationale de Psychologie Scientifique” (UIPS).

Future congresses

Four items related to future congresses were considered. First, regarding the 1966 International Congress of Psychology, Leontiev reviewed the arrangements and program with the committee, which indicated its satisfaction. Second, Summerfield reported on the steps being taken by the British Psychological Society for the 1969 International Congress of Psychology; an Organizing Committee had been appointed and was already working. Third, Sato reported that the feasibility of inviting the Union to hold a future congress in Japan was to be put to a vote at the July convention of the Japanese Psychological Association. Finally, Westerlund announced that the next congress of the IAAP would be held in Amsterdam in 1968. In view of the potential difficulties related to the temporal proximity of both congresses, it was decided to propose to the 1996 Assembly to hold the IUPS congresses at 4- rather than 3-year intervals and to arrange a closer coordination with IAAP.

Relations with ISSC and UNESCO

Otto Klineberg, who represented the IUPS in ISSC, reported on the council’s recent activities and plans for the future. He expressed the view that the relations between ISSC and the IUPS were excellent. At the Chairman’s invitation, K. Szczerba-Likiernik, Secretary-General of ISSC, attending as an observer, reflected the view that in spite of the excellent relations among individual representatives, there was room for improvement at the organizational level. It was suggested that this could be done, inter alia, by a fuller exchange of information about decisions, plans, and activities. Klineberg, who also represented the Union on the Committee on International Social Science Documentation, called attention to the project of an international bibliography of psychology. Samy Friedman, Chief of UNESCO’s Division for the International Development of the Social Sciences, also present as an observer, further added that he was expecting feedback on sample volumes of this bibliography in order to properly orient the project.

While considering the involvement of the Union in the International Biological Program, a paper prepared by Piaget and titled Projet d’un programme de collaboration interdisciplinaire entre psychologues et biologistes served as the basis for the discussion that led to the creation of an Ad Hoc Committee, composed of Piaget, Paillard, Leontiev, and Tomaszewski, to formulate IUPS policy regarding biological psychology. With regards to possible activities within the International Biological Program, it was decided that psychology’s major contribution could be made through the project on human adaptability by working on the development of a battery of behavioral measures capable of general application in different cultural settings. It was proposed to invite Dr Simon Biesheuvel, of South Africa, to act as the Chair of this working group.

The relationship with UNESCO was examined in the presence of Friedman. It was noted that the UNESCO General Conference had approved, in 1964, the merging of the social and human sciences with the cultural activities under one administrative head, despite protests from many organizations, including IUPS. Friedman indicated that this change could be viewed constructively as a move to strengthen relations with the humanities. He added that the IUPS should look into the possibility of seeking affiliation with one of the UNESCO councils in the biological sciences. Regarding financial matters, while noting that the UNESCO yearly subvention of US$6000 would continue in 1966, he also indicated that the Union had not made sufficient use of UNESCO’s sources of support for research and other activities.

Piaget reported on the UNESCO project entitled “International study on the main trends of research in the sciences of man” in which he was responsible for issues concerning psychology. He indicated that questionnaires had been developed to help assist in the data collection and that the Union’s national members would be called upon to provide assistance. The success of this project seemed to be very important for the future development and support of the social sciences in the UNESCO framework.

Other issues

The working group that had been established to look into the possible contributions of psychology to the reduction of international tensions (what came to be known as the Swiss resolution) proposed two specific actions: first, that the paper they had prepared, entitled An Appeal to Psychologists, be sent to all IUPS members. This paper suggested two orientations: (1) the emphasis of psychological knowledge relevant to the reduction of international tensions, and (2) the conduct and encouragement of new research which can add to this knowledge. Second, that an international round-table of experts be convened on the occasion of the 1966 International Congress of Psychology in Moscow. Both proposals were accepted unanimously.

The committee was informed that 77 papers had been received regarding the project on the international exchange of psychologists proposed in the 1962 La Napoule report. These papers would be edited and returned to their authors for review. No specific date was set for publication.

Simon Biesheuvel, the President of the South African Psychological Association, presented an excellent résumé of the psychological services available in African countries. He proposed that a planning conference be held under the auspices and support of the Union. Reflecting the Union’s interest in Asian studies, it was noted that more opportunities for the training of Asian psychology students beyond their first degree were needed.

A proposal to establish a regional Asian Association of Psychologists, following the model set by the Interamerican Society of Psychology, had been received by the Japanese Psychological Association from Dr Ayman, Secretary-General of the National Institute of Psychology in Teheran, Iran. The Executive Committee agreed that IUPS was interested in this idea and could provide assistance in the future.

Concerning the project on “Problems of delinquency in newly developing countries,” Mailloux listed three areas in need of attention: (1) the relations between the socialization of individuals and their capability to communicate, (2) the factors affecting group dynamics in this socialization process, and (3) the central problems of the nature and cause of aggression.


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