Welcome to the 13th Conference of the International Association for the Treatment of Sexual Offenders (IATSO) in Porto!
Sexual offender risk assessment and sexual offender treatment faces more challenges than ever before. Along with a steady increase of our knowledge about sexual offenders during the past 30 years substantial questions arise. Is sexual offender treatment effective at all and can its effectiveness be proven by studies adhering to high standards of empirical research? Can we communicate to decision makers more than just risk estimates derived by group behaviour? Can group-based risk categories be applied for the prediction of risk for the individual? Does effective risk management require treatment, or can treatment be substituted by other means of control or supervision? Are high risk sexual offenders treatable at all? What are effective policies for protecting the society from sexual offending?
The work of professionals and decision makers in the sexual offender management system is seriously threatened by the lack of good answers to these questions. Developing good answers for hard questions and complex facts, therefore, is the ultimate mission of a scientific organisation. Good answers, on the other hand, can only be achieved if academic discussion and exchange is guaranteed. This, however, ultimately means to take time.
Therefore, we invite you all to take time for the IATSO conference in Porto, 2014.
The scientific program of the conference will reveal the recent developments, dynamics and diversities of current worldwide research on aspects of sexual offender assessment and treatment, which are of major importance with regard to both academia and society. It will also provide an opportunity for participants to meet and network with colleagues from around the world.
The chosen spotlight of the congress is “Criminal Policies in Sexual Violence: From Research to Legislation and Treatment”. Only by a professional perspective based on high quality research we can continue to bring further improvements into the field. A high quality program is planned with internationally recognized key experts in the field delivering plenary and symposia lectures. These invited talks and a selective choice of presentations (in both oral and poster formats) will add this scientific program to the top-level.
We look forward to seeing you in Porto and invite you to submit your proposals for oral or poster presentations
Executive-Chairperson of the Conference
IATSO General Secretary