Piera Serra

graduated with a four year first class honors degree in Clinical Psychology at the University of Padua in 1975 with a thesis on the field: “Ethnic Minority Group: Community-Environment Relationship”.

In 1991 I specialized in Clinical Criminology with a first-class post-graduate degree from the University of Modena and afterwards I obtained a master’s degree with honors in Cognitive Behavioral Psychotherapy for psychosis from the University of Verona.

From 1975 till 2011 I worked as a clinical psychologist in the National Service for Mental Health, reaching senior level in 1978. In 1984 I was made head supervisor of a community program for youths who were addicted to drugs. In 1991 I was made director of the clinical psychological unit of the local prison.

As a psychotherapist, I trained in psychoanalysis and family therapy and since 1990 I have been a member of the Italian Society of Psychology and Relational Psychotherapy, reaching senior level in 1994.
All along my career I have been teaching psychotherapy and conducting workshops, trainings and clinical supervision for mental health service professionals.

In 1994 I was appointed juvenile honorary judge by the Superior Council of Judiciary. From 2008 to October 2013 I was part of the Court of Appeals of Bologna, Youth Section.

Publications: in 1978 I published an essay on adolescent behavior (L’adolescente sublimato [The Adolescent Sublimated]), essay that became the subject of newspaper articles and reviews.
Subsequently I published research carried out mainly according to a qualitative scientific methodology: case studies and therapeutic technique, as well as an analysis of psychiatric practice and of psychotherapy teaching. In particular, studies conducted for several years on physical violence in couple relationships resulted in some publications up to an article published in 1993 on Family Process (“Physical Violence in the Couple Relationship: a Contribution Towards the Analysis of the Context”, Family Process, no.1, vol.33, pages 21-33).
Afterwards, I dealt with forensic psychology, producing several articles and an essay on the professional profile of the juvenile honorary judge in the Italian system, Il giudice onorario minorile [The Juvenile Honorary Judge], Franco Angeli, 2006 republished in 2013, subject to several reviews on sector journals.
Overall, as the sole author, I produced more than thirty scientific publications in the press as well as other co-written papers and various speeches and reports in scientific conferences.
Recently I conducted research on juvenile court judges for CNR (National Italian Research Council).
Part of the project Steering Committee “Coordinated Cross Interorganizational no to Gender Violence actions”- A.C.T.I.O.N qualified for funding in the Official Gazette n. 284/2007.
Since 2000 I have been part of the editorial board of Minori Giustizia, a review sponsored by the Italian Association of Magistrates for Youth and Family.

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  • Editorial Board


    Matteo Selvini, Scuola di Psicoterapia della famiglia Mara Selvini Palazzoli, Milano

    Scientific Editors

    Grazia Attili, Sapienza Università, Roma

    Alfredo Canevaro, American Family Therapy Academy, Buenos Aires

    Juan Luis Linares, Università Autònoma, Barcellona

    Marco Vannotti, Cerfasy (Centre de Recherches Familiales et Systémiques), Neuchâtel