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About Mary E. Olson

Mary Olson, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and Associate Adjunct Professor at the Smith College School of Social Work. She is the US expert on Open Dialogue, a network-based approach to severe psychiatric crises developed and evaluated at Keropudas Hospital in Tornio, Finland. Since 2001, she has collaborated with Jaakko Seikkula, Ph.D., one of the main developers of Open Dialogue, on developing training and research programs that will help bring this approach to the US. She is Co-Principal Investigator (Douglas Ziedonis, M.D.: PI) of the Open Dialogue adaptation study at UMMS. Her other research and scholarship examine dialogical transformation in psychotherapy, the effects of managed care on relational therapies, anorexia as communication, and the use of writing in therapy. Mary was a Senior Fulbright Scholar (2001-2002) to Finland in the Department of Psychology at the University of Jyvaskyla. From 1990-1995, she was Director of the Clinical Externship in Systemic Family Therapy at Berkshire Medical Center during the chairmanship of Carlos Sluzki, M.D., one of the founder’s of the family therapy field.


Present Assistant Professor, University of Massachusetts Medical School Department of Psychiatry
Present Associate Adjunct Professor, Smith College School of Social Work

Curriculum Vitae

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Honors and Awards

  • Fulbright Senior Scholar Award in Finland: Research and Lecturing (2001-2002)
  • Research Fellowship, Center for Innovative Practice, Smith College School for Social Work (2000-2003)
  • Elected to the American Academy of Family Therapists (1995)

Contact Information

Department of Psychiatry
University of Massachusetts Medical School
55 Lake Avenue North
Worcester, MA 01516

Articles (6)

Contributions to Books (1)