Activities Archive

Here you can see information for past events organised by the SFCP.

2020 Socratic Dialogues with the Royal College of Physicians

The Royal College of Physicians are currently working with SFCP to undertake a formal research evaluation of the Socratic Dialogue process in collaboration with the East of England Deanery.  Over the last two years, several Socratic Dialogues have taken place with the Heads of School and trainee physicians to explore topics such as tackling unprofessional behaviour and breaking bad news. 

During the pandemic, a series of virtual Socratic Dialogues have been SFCP facilitated to help physician trainees to meaningfully explore the development of clinical skills and leadership during this challenging time.

Socratic Dialogues with the Royal College of Physicians

The Senior Policy and Training adviser from the Joint Royal College of Physicians (RCP) Training Board, Dr Miriam Armstrong attended a Socratic Dialogue Workshop in London during the summer of 2017. She was particularly interested in the Medical Board Members from RCP exploring the concept further at one of their training workshops. In order to discuss in greater depth, Mike Cook and Julie-Marie ffrench Devitt travelled to London later that year to meet with the Board Members from across the UK in order to present a formal overview of the Socratic Dialogue process.

As a result of that meeting a Socratic Dialogue was held with the Royal College of Physicians at their Headquarters in Regent’s Park, London in December 2017. The topic of the dialogue was:

‘What makes a good medical student?’

The SD was particularly well evaluated by all who attended and received a rating of 5/5 with many positive comments about the usefulness of the process. As a result another dialogue was held in October 2018:

‘What is reflective practice in Medicine?’

The Board are preparing a formal evaluation of the process in conjunction with The East of England Deanery and further Socratic Dialogues are being planned.

Sixth International Colloquium on Dialogical Practice and Dialogical Philosophizing

The Sixth International Colloquium on Dialogical Practice and Dialogical Philosophizing was held at St. Catharine´s College, Cambridge, 6th-10th August, 2018, under the title: “Limits – Borders – Boundaries: Philosophical, political and social aspects”.

International Colloquium on Dialogical Practice and Dialogical Philosophizing 2017: 11th August – 15th August

The fifth International Socratic Colloquium took place in Berlin. The topic of the Colloquium was “The Logic of Question and Answer” and it included various workshops the results from which were later used to formulate topics for Socratic Dialogues. The latter were especially challenging since they required the facilitators to plan on the spot. At the same time, however, the Socratic Dialogues prompted active participation and lead to fruitful insights and reflections.

International Colloquia on Dialogical Practice and Dialogical Philosophizing in Sofia, Bulgaria 2015 and Rovereto, Italy 2016

The idea behind the international symposiums is to discuss and theorise upon the experience with dialogical philosophising within the neosocratic tradition, and other dialogical approaches as well. The format of these events is flexible, including different types of group and individual work. In Sofia, statements were given by speakers and discussed in group sessions, and short SDs were conducted and thoroughly reflected upon. In Italy the format was a bit different – no individual statements were given, except an introductory speech by Dr. Paolo Dordoni upon the main topic – interpretation. This was followed by a number of different activities, including discussion, working with texts, tackling a casus, Socratic Dialogues, and a group session on the main topic. Remarkably, this allowed the multitude of theoretical angles to converge, bringing about a cohesion between the participants in the colloquium.

Grete Hermann Workshop 2012

Grete Henry-Hermann (1901-1984) was a brilliant critical philosopher and philosopher of science, who collaborated in Nelson’s scholarly work, was active in resistance activity in Nazi Germany, and later as a refugee in Britain. She took part actively in post war German democratic politics, teacher training, and chairing Nelson’s Academy. Though less well known as a mathematician, she shared developing ideas with the pioneers of quantum physics.

Notes for Aberdeen Workshop on Grete
Grete Hermann Aberdeen Workshop account
Philosophical Background of Grete Hermann’s Work


In 2009 the Society held a conference in Chichester, addressing the topic of “Living Together in our Modern World”.

Click here to download the Society’s report of the event.

Some of the papers presented at the conference can be downloaded here.

Philosophy through practical activity, by John Halliday

The ethics of xenotransplantation, by Beate Littig

Teaching in business, by Beate Littig

Authority, faith and the limits of dialogue, by Richard Norman