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The walls within: working with defenses against otherness

Online Conference 5-11 July 2021

AM14-PDW14: Training in Reflective Citizens Koinonia. Method of Working with Citizens and Organizations


Professional Development Workshop: PDW 14
Wednesday 3 July 2024
9.15am to 5.45pm EEST

Training in Reflective Citizens Koinonia. Method of Working with Citizens and Organizations

Facilitators: Marina Mojović & Zaven Đorđević

The methodology of the Reflective Citizens Koinonia (RC) is nowadays well recognized many psycho-analytic and psycho-social fields, and branches keep spreading to numerous cities, villages, communities and countries. RC was initiated during the Belgrade Peace Protests of the “Horrible Nineties”. Colleagues and friends, dr.Marina Mojović and dr.Jelica Satarić created reflective spaces with and for citizens from a wide range of different backgrounds. From its conception it was applied to adapting to turbulences in the social fields around. RC events always reveal many conscious & unconscious layers of personal, family, community, and globally related dynamics. Appreciation of complexity is among the core values, rather than aiming to arrive to any sort of homogeneous conclusion. The purpose is primarily to mobilize spaces for freedom of diversity, for learning to listen and be heard. This is the ‘art-of-listening’ and the ‘art-of-dialogue’ that often indeed, transforms hate into a culture of dialogue (in terms of Pat de Mare’s Koinonia, 1991).

The development of the RC-method was in fact a shared/social creativity (Montuori, 2018) with citizen-participants, co-hosts, trainees–participants, senior and peer colleaguesparticipants. The process evolved during a variety of RC events (local, regional and international) in ongoing joint learning towards further fine attunements - searching for best practice. However, even from early on there was strong theoretical work too, involving lively sibling interdisciplinary dialogue between the fields of group analysis, psychoanalysis, group relations, social dreaming, operative groups of Pichon Riviere, Listening Posts and therapeutic communities. In waves of dissonance, even cacophony, sometimes, polyphonic resonance, that long ongoing creation process paved the way for this new method. Appreciation of ancestors, but also its own identity which developed adequate skills to survive and match demands in the most difficult stormy circumstances. At moments some of its guerilla style features become vivid.

Training for RC-hosts, both RC-organizers & RC-conveners, is a crucial integral part of the RC-Koinonia development (continuous learning-through-experience; with support & supervision by senior RC-activists, RC-coordination and RC-steering teams; number of special RC Training workshops provide understanding of the methodology. This evolved through its Learning Community characteristics. Key elements that evolved were Koinona as a method and a Community of Communities, the rationale, briefing and debriefing RCworkshops, etc. Like in the RC-workshops and RC-Conferences, so in the RC-Training all participants involved needed to learn to stay open in the face of the complexity of paradigms of our divided worlds - as much as possible dialoguing with our internal and external citizenship - “zajedničarenje”.

This ISPSO PDW follows a parallel paper presentation (held AM NY 2019) and the Keynote
(online AM Moscow 2022). It will, this time, focus on offering a brief RC Training.

Working Method:

  1. The theoretical part will be very short (10 to 15min), followed by an
  2. illustrative mini RC-workshop as demonstration/illustration (not longer then 90min) in
    service of the next
  3. part with more explanation and discussion, aimed for closer understanding of the RC method,
  4. ending with the review & planning sub-session

Target Audience:
Invited participants are those interested in the method, especially those wishing to start their own RC-branch.

Learning Outcomes:
Learning how to begin, create or co-create RC, in person or online, both as RCorganizers & RC conveners: understanding the planning steps, with essential practical instructions, developing skills, and ways of joining the International RC Koinonia.

Biographical Summaries:

Marina Mojović MA, MD, psychiatrist, psychoanalytic psychotherapist, group analyst, and organizational consultant in Serbia, founder of the Reflective Citizens Koinonia Method (RC) and the International Reflective Citizens. She is a full member of the IAGP, ISPSO, GASi. In Group Analytic Society-Belgrade a training group analyst, supervisor, the founder of its Section and Training in ‘Psychoanalytic and Group Analytic Approach to Understanding Institutions, Organizations and Society’, of the RC Training and Social Dreaming Training.

Zaven Đorđević, architect working in his company, systems-psychodynamic organizational consultant, finished introductory course in Group Analysis, RC organizer, actively involved in development of the RC Koinonia since 2000.


De Mare,P., Piper, R.,Thompson. (1991) Koinoni; From Hate through Dialogue to Culture in the Large Groups. London: Karnac.

Mojović,M.(2011).Manifestations of psychic retreats in social systems. In: Earl Hopper&Haim Weinberg (Eds).Social Unconscious in Persons, Groups and Societies,

Mojović, M.(2015).Disrupted Matrices. Challenges and Changes. Group Analysis,48(4):540-557.

Mojović, M.(2016).Serbian Reflective-Citizens Flourishing in the Leaking Containers.Group Analysis50(5):370-384.

Mojović, M.(2017).“Untouchable Infant Gangs” in group and social matrices as obstacles to reconciliation. In: G.Ofer (ed.) A Bridge Over Troubled Water. Conflicts and Reconciliation in Groups and Society,pp119-139. London:Karnac.

Mojović M (2018). Introduction and welcome for the Winter Workshop 2018,‘NorthfieldRevisited’.Group Analysis, vol. 51, 4: 426–433.

Mojović, M. (2019).Totalitarian and Post-Totalitarian Matrices: Reflective-Citizens Facing Social-Psychic-Retreats. In B. Huppertz (Ed), Approaches to Psychic Trauma: Theory and Practice. pp.159-176, London: Rowman & Littlefield .

Mojović M (2019) Serbian Reflective-Citizens and the Art of Psycho-Social Listening and Dialogue at the Caesura. Journal of Psychosocial Studies. Volume 12, Numbers 1-2, July 2019: 81–95(15).

Mojović M (2020). The Balkans on the Reflective-Citizens Couch Unraveling Social-Psychic-Retreats. In: Zajenkowska A and Levin U (eds) The Psychoanalytic and Socio-Cultural Exploration of a Continent. London and NY: Routledge, pp.175–187.

Mojović M (2022) Thinking Together in Reflective Citizens.In Ringer M, Gordon R and Vandenbussche B. Eds.) The collective spark: Igniting thinking in groups, teams and the wider world. Gent: Grafische Cel.pp211-224.

Mojović, M.(2024). Tesla Transformers in the Analytic Fields in Serbia. In R. Snell, R. Morgan Jones and D. Loewenthal (Eds.) Developments in Field Theory for Psychotherapists, Pszchoanalysts and Counsellors. (pp 87- 107). London and NY: Routledge.

Morgan Jones, R. and Mojović, M. (2022). The traumatised field: innovating interventions in the light of post-Bion field theory developments in group- & psycho-analysis. Parallel paper presentation ISPSO AM Moscow.

Snell, R., Morgan Jones, R. and Loewenthal (2024). Developments in Field Theory for Psychotherapists, Psychoanalysts and Counsellors. London &NY: Routledge.