September 1, 2008

A Conversation with Elam Nunnally

Now, Tapio has translated from Finnish an interview from 1999 which he did with Elam Nunnally, who was an original member of the Brief Family Therapy Center, the institute where the solution-focused approach was developed in the beginning of the 1980's.

From the Whirls of a Flowing River
A Conversation with Elam Nunnally
by Tapio Malinen

Professor Elam Nunnally of Wisconsin University has trained, consulted and supervised Finns for over 20 years. He started as a couple communication course supervisor in the end of the 1970's, and has been educating students on the solution-focused approach since 1985. He has also written and published a lot of articles on both topics. For 14 years, Elam belonged to the research group at Family Therapy Center (BFTC) in Milwaukee, as a part of the astoundingly creative process out of which the solution-focused approach was born. The following conversation took place on the first of August, 1999, in his home in Milwaukee.

Tapio Malinen: I would like to get to know the history of the solution-focused therapy through you. Could you tell me about the time that your first contact with the BFTC group?

Elam Nunnally: As far as I can remember, it was in 1976. At the time, I had a private practice, but I also did volunteer work at Family Service. I wanted to work in pairs with someone, and I can't really remember when I first met Insoo Kim Berg, but either way, she was the one I started working with.


  1. I cannot access the complete interview. Would you e-mail it to me at Thanks, Jim

  2. Here it is:


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