My interest in the psychoanalytic study of groups began years ago when, during my clinical internship, I discovered Bion's Experiences in Groups, 'discovered' because I was in the midst of a self-guided reading program, but in a context of an ongoing small study group and daily work in an inpatient therapeutic community. Bion's writing was one of those rare, illuminating, transformative encounters, and our consultant's stance and even his early words are still vivid in my mind, as are a number of patients from the unit whose startlingly lucid and sensible participation as community members in discussions of daily life contrasted sharply with their more bizarre communications in the patient role. My career since then has been primarily at the Austen Riggs Center where I have treated seriously disturbed patients in psychoanalytic psychotherapy and directed the therapeutic community program for many years. Riggs is an unusual treatment center, the only one of a number of well-known national hospitals to have survived the managed care assault on psychiatric institutions in America. Indeed, Riggs has actually thrived in recent years by staying relatively small and mission-focused. Its program of intensive psychotherapy and community immersion takes place in a completely open setting, which, in a structural sense, fundamentally recognizes the distinct authority of the patient group and requires the ongoing negotiation of, and dynamic attention to, the partnership between patients and staff. A fascination with institutional life come with this territory, and mine has been deepened and developed in the last several years through Edward Shapiro's medical directorship. More recently, my role at Riggs has been to direct the Erikson Institute for Education and Research. The Institute has a range of programs; a Clinical Fellowship, conferences and seminars, Erikson Scholars, clinical and empirical research, an interdisciplinary program, and a program of organizational consultation and training. I began the latter a few years ago as an effort to link the learning from the open setting/therapeutic community to organizational problems in other human service institutions. Beyond this component, the Institute itself, true to the work of its namesake, exists on the boundary between psychoanalytic clinical work and the larger society and attempts to bring a dynamic perspective, developed in the work with 'treatment-resistant' patients, into interaction with societal issues. Hence, my interest in ISPSO. My roles in other organizations, present and past, include; faculty member of the Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis, guest faculty of the Berkshire Psychoanalytic Institute, visiting faculty of the Southeast Florida Institute for Psychoanalysis and the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California, and Visiting Fellow in the Psychological Medicine and Psychotherapy Department, University College Hospital, London. Training includes a four-year Post-Doctoral Fellowship in intensive treatment at the Austen Riggs Center, leading to certification in psychoanalysis by the American Board of Professional Psychology, and an NIMH program of training in group psychotherapy. I also serve on the Board of the Center for the Study of Groups and Social Systems, the Boston Affiliate of the A. K. Rice Institute, and am currently its President. I have been a member or on the staff of a number of group relations conferences in the Tavistock tradition, both in the United States and in Europe. In particular, my conference work with Group Relations Nederland has been especially enriching, given the quality and international character of its staff. This is another current in my interest in ISPSO. It speaks to a larger concern I feel at this point in my life about the importance of bringing a systems psychodynamic perspective to an understanding of societal problems.