Interest Groups | SIOPSA


Interest Group in the Systems Psychodynamics of Organisations (IGSPO)

Interest Group Overview

The Interest Group for the Systems Psychodynamics of Organisations (IGSPO) was founded in 2013 by Professor Frans Cilliers to create awareness of the nature, role and importance of studying the systemic unconscious dynamics affecting organisational behaviour. A further goal of IGSPO is to create opportunities for SIOPSA members and South African organisations to become informed and gain competence in organisational consulting and coaching below the surface of consciousness. This is important in authorising psychologists and organisational consultants to include working with unconscious behaviour in their practices.

IGSPO specifically targets the following fields of psychology:

  • Systems psychodynamics (as born from open systems theory, psychoanalysis and group relations theory)
  • Organisational behaviour
  • Organisational development (OD) and Institutional Transformation (IT)

This interest group is open to be joined by any member of SIOPSA – especially for members who are curious about the unconscious, not-so-rational dynamics of organisations! We have, since our founding, presented an Annual Systems Psychodynamic Workshop at the St. Georges Hotel, which combined here-and-now experiential work with theoretical and reflective sessions. These annual workshops have been directed by Prof Frans Cilliers. We have also presented regional workshops in different parts of South Africa in order to make our work accessible to SIOPSA members countrywide.

Why Join (Benefits and Opportunities)

Joining IGSPO is a great way of connecting to a community of I/O Psychologists who desire to continuously approve our ability as consultants, coaches, managers, leaders and teachers to also work with the deeper-lying, often unconscious dynamics permeating our client institutions, our own practices and the broader society within which we live and work.

How to join?

To join, please contact IGSPO’s Secretary, Louise Tonelli:

Interest Group for People Assessment in Industry (IGPAI)

Interest Group Overview

People Assessments in Industry (PAI) was established in 1998 to proactively engage various stakeholders interested in psychological assessment in South African industry.  PAI has functioned as an interest group of the Society for Industrial and Organisational Psychology in South Africa since 2005. The group’s activities include promoting fair assessments in the workplace, with the primary aim being to be generally recognised as the leading organisation in the continuing promotion of fair assessment in the workplace to which people will automatically refer for assessment expertise and knowledge. The importance of such an interest group in South Africa is clear with regards to the legislative challenges around testing practices as well as the lack of clear communication and strong working relationships between relevant stakeholders.


The purpose of PAI is to ensure psychometric assessments and testing exists in the South African organisational context as a value adding ethical and fair practice.


To provide best practice guidelines, guidance and updates to all relevant assessment stakeholders as it relates to the ethical and fair use of psychometric assessments and testing in organisational contexts.

Which field of psychology does the interest group target?

The PAI targets all fields of psychology with a focus on Industrial/Organisational/Research Psychology and Psychometrics, but also Clinical Psychology.

What are the goals of the interest group?

  • Promoting fair psychometric assessment and testing practices in the workplace,
  • Being generally recognised as the leading organisation in the continuing promotion of fair psychometric assessment and testing in the workplace to which people will automatically refer for assessment expertise and knowledge.

PAI acts as an independent body but seeks to build relationships and to collaborate with such bodies as the:

  • Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA),
  • Association of Test Publishers (ATP),
  • Psychological Society of South Africa (PsySSA)
  • Assessment Centre Study Group of South Africa (ACSG),
  • The International Test Commission (ITC),
  • Business SA, test users and test takers who have similar interests with regards to assessments in the workplace.

What are some interesting things the interest group has accomplished?

Between 2018 and 2020, PAI was instrumental in the establishment of Assessment Standards South Africa (ASSA). ASSA comprises representatives from the Society for Industrial and Organisational Psychology (SIOPSA) and its interest group People Assessments in Industry (PAI), Psychological Society of South Africa (PsySSA) Association of Test Publishers (ATP) and the International Test Commission (ITC).  ASSA is an independent non-regulatory external assessments evaluation ‘body’ working collaboratively with the support of the Department of Labour and the HPCSA to assist in implementing a robust, best practice and technology enabled process that could be used to review people assessment instruments and tests.  It is envisaged that this body will look at the broad spectrum of instruments that are used in South Africa and will not be limited to psychological tests only. In cases where an instrument meets the criteria for test classification as a psychological test, the applicants will be informed accordingly about submitting the test for classification to the HPCSA as per the statutory requirements. The core purpose of Assessment Standards South Africa (ASSA) would be to review the quality of tests that are available for use in South Africa.  Based on the experience in other countries the voluntary submission of assessment instruments for objective evaluation and reviews will raise the general standard and awareness of using quality tests. 

ASSA is currently developing an online system that will be used for the ASSA process, using the clear process and criteria guidelines contained in the developed documents. The online system is currently being used as a part of a pro bono pilot with invited ATP test publishers submitting tests for review and providing feedback on the system and process. It is anticipated that the online review system will go ‘live’ for public use in early 2021.  Visit the ASSA website here:

During 2020, PAI also released a survey to obtain an understanding of the current assessment landscape in South Africa. The survey covered areas to understand how practitioners are managing with Covid-19 and to also obtain an understanding of the legislative knowledge of Assessment practitioners and possible gaps. Furthermore, the survey also sought to obtain the views of Psychometrists as it pertains to their current profession, use of assessments and their professional needs in the South African environment and to identify areas that PAI can add value to the profession. The results of the survey will be presented to the public by way of a thought leadership piece and webinar during early 2021.

During 2020 PAI also hosted a webinar in collaboration with the University of Cape Town by Professor Nathan Kuncel during June entitled ‘Predictors and Process in Selection Decision Making’.

During the 2019 PsySSA and SIOPSA conferences, two round table discussions were held during which representatives of ASSA presented the aim of ASSA and progress on the documents developed (process and criteria guidelines). Members of the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) also participated in these sessions upon invitations from ASSA. The review documents were distributed to all members of the various professional bodies and stakeholders involved in psychological assessment for their feedback and input. The process guidelines and criteria documents were updated and finalised using feedback from members, stakeholders and other interested parties. Feedback was generally very positive and appreciative of the thoroughness and clarity of the process and criteria.

During 2019 PAI also launched a highly successful Masterclass entitled ‘Technological Advances in Assessments & the changing role of Assessment Practitioners’. This Masterclass provided insight on the next generation of assessments, clarity on legislative changes and guidance to practitioners on the correct and ethical use of assessments within the South African environment. PAI were invited to present this workshop at the 40th Annual ACSG Conference that was held from 9 – 13 March 2020 at the Hilton in Sandton, South Africa.

The aim was also to run regional workshops across the country through SIOPSA regional groups. However, given the current Covid-19 situation, a decision was made to hold a virtual webinar for all who would be interested in attending. Our chairperson, David Bischof, presented this webinar to a sold-out audience on the 20th March and we thank everyone for their attendance and input.

A PAI breakfast was held on the Monday 7th May 2018 at University of Pretoria. The breakfast session served as a follow-on from the PAI hosted breakfast held in April 2016. In 2016, panellists and delegates identified a need to focus on evaluation criteria for assessments in South Africa. A task team convened by the PAI with representatives from industry, professional associations and academia have since focussed on exploring best practice models in assessment evaluation. In this session presenters discussed current events, best practices and ideas that could assist with improved assessment evaluation practices in the South African context. This was followed by discussion with some of the task team representatives working on a model for assessment evaluation in South Africa. A critical review of the article ‘When good intentions meet a methodological thought disorder’ by Paul Barrett – reflections on this article (Behavioural Sciences 2018, 8(1), 5 was discussed.

PAI released an online survey entitled ‘South African Psychometric Assessment’ during April of 2017. The aim of the survey was to conduct research to understand and explore the assessment testing tools currently being used in industry for recruitment, development and talent management purposes. This includes understanding which of the tests being used are registered with the HPCSA and which are not. Furthermore, the survey also aims to understand how the current assessment community views relevant legislation as well as Various presentations in collaboration with regional branches were held on the results of the survey and current trends in the testing and assessment South African environment.  Regional branch participation included the Pretoria, Johannesburg, Durban and North west branches. Further presentations will take place at the Eastern and Western Cape regional branches following conference this year.

 Who can join the interest group?

All paid up members of SIOPSA are automatically members of the PAI interest group and will receive all PAI communication and information. There is no formal registration process. 

If you would like to be involved in the activities of PAI, please contact the chairperson, David Bischof at: / 0732545119.

Why Join (Benefits and Opportunities)?

  • Keep up to date with developments in the field of assessments and psychometrics
  • Help promote ethical, fair and good assessment practices
  • Collaboratively work towards reducing negative perceptions of assessments
  • Create an understanding of the field and the value it adds to individuals and organisations
  • Participate in research efforts, webinars and information sharing sessions.
  • Contribute to thought leadership pieces
  • Allow for the interests and concerns of psychometrists and psychologists in the field to be heard

Planned Activites for EARLY 2021:


Interest Group in Coaching & Consulting Psychology (IGCCP SA)

Interest Group Overview

SIOPSA formed the Consulting in Psychology Interest Group during the annual conference in June 2006. Our interest group has, since its inception, focused primarily on establishing and growing a sustainable framework for Consulting – and now both Coaching and Consulting Psychology – in South Africa. Coaching has, since 2007, steadily gained traction within the South African organisational context. Dr Aletta Odendaal was invited, in 2008, to participate in a global dialogue to facilitate the development of coaching. This culminated in SIOPSA signing the Global Coaching Community (GCC) Dublin Declaration on Coaching. SIOPSA was then invited to be part of a global network to facilitate the theoretical, applied and professional global development of Coaching Psychology. In 2009, Coaching Psychology was incorporated into our Vision, and has become a major driving factor for us. We henceforth became known as the Interest Group in Coaching and Consulting Psychology (IGCCP). From 2010 to 2012, Aletta and Dr Anna-Rosa le Roux (the first IGCCP Chairperson) established an important and solid foundation by liaising and developing key relationships with the international Coaching Psychology academic fraternity. Since then, we have taken our Interest Group forward, on various levels.

Which field of psychology does the interest group focus on?

Coaching and Consulting

The goals of the Interest Group are:

  • Professionalise the domains of Coaching and Consulting Psychology in South Africa.
  • Engage all professionals interested in coaching and consulting psychology in South Africa, and to share the theory, research and practice of our domain.
  • Encourage high standards of coaching and consulting grounded in sound research and evidence-based scientist-practitioner application, driven by the specific client’s context
  • Develop and expand our knowledge and skills-base by establishing appropriate criteria, standards and CPD activities.
  • Foster cooperative relations with key stakeholders: organisations, government, regulating bodies, interest groups, psychologists, professional bodies and educational institutions.
  • Continually influence the science and practice, and stimulate the exchange of knowledge, ideas and experience amongst international and local psychologists and other interested parties.
  • Promote the development of coaching and consulting psychology as an emerging theoretical and applied sub-discipline of psychology.
  • Monitor and hold ourselves accountable for achieving our Vision, on behalf of SIOPSA.

Who can join the Interest Group?

If you are a paid-up member of SIOPSA, you are eligible to be part of the interest group.

What are some interesting things the interest group has accomplished?

The IGCCP (under the auspices of SIOPSA) works closely with its international peers in order to professionalise the coaching industry, as professional bodies have an important and strategic role to play in this process. Both the International Society for Coaching Psychology (ISCP) and the British Psychological Society (BPS) have already embarked on a process to provide their members with recognition of their coaching-specific expertise. In this regard, the IGCCP SA has published a Code of Practice for Registered Psychology Practitioners in Coaching. And we also launched the List of Coaching Practitioners (LoCP) In 2016.

Resource downloads:

The importance of authentic leadership in the workplace continues to accelerate globally, and Coaching and Consulting Psychology, in particular, have received much attention in this regard.

We are Globally Connected

  • We were invited as guest speakers to the 1st International Congress of Coaching Psychology (London, Dec. 2010).
  • The IGCCP was a proud organiser and host of the 1st Southern Hemisphere Congress of Coaching Psychology (Pretoria, May 2011).
  • The IGCCP Executive sits on the International Society of Coaching Psychology’s (ISCP) International Steering Committee.
  • We provide updates on the developments in South Africa for Coaching Psychology International, the International Society for Coaching Psychology’s (ISCP) newsletter.
  • We attend and speak at various international coaching and consulting psychology congresses – in Dublin, Spain, Rome, Paris, Sydney, Mozambique, at the International Congress of Psychology (Cape Town, July 2012), in Edinburgh (December 2013), and at the 5th International Congress of Coaching Psychology and the Society of Consulting Psychology Mid-Winter Conference, in San Diego (February 2015).

Our international MOU’s

The IGCCP signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the International Society for Coaching Psychology (ISCP) in 2011. All members of good standing within SIOPSA are offered automatically free Affiliate membership of the ISCP, access to the website and the publication, Coaching Psychology International (CPI). Our interest group participates in publishing relevant Coaching Psychology updates [CPI, Volume 5, Issue 1, 2012]. The ISCP is an international professional membership body established to further the discipline and profession of coaching psychology. The international aspect of the Society is reflected in our Honorary Vice Presidents who are based in Australia, Canada, China, Denmark, New Zealand, Portugal, United Kingdom, USA, Greece, Sweden and South Africa. In October 2011, the IGCCP signed a MoU with the Section of the Psychology of Organisations and Work (SPOT) of the Col·legi Oficial de Psicòlegs de Catalunya (COPC) to communicate and work together, in support of the development of the Coaching Psychology profession in South Africa and Spain. We are also proud to be affiliated with the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Society of Consulting Psychology (SCP), Division 13 (‘The Catalyst Division’) – through our respective organisations’ MOUs with the ISCP.

Licence Agreement between SIOPSA and the British Psychological Society




Our Achievement Highlights

We are proud to have launched the Code of Practice for Registered Psychology Practitioners in Coaching at the 16th Annual SIOPSA Conference, 2014 – you can download a copy of The Code from the SIOPSA website We conducted a successful Public Consultation process in preparation for the launch of the Code of Practice. We successfully developed and facilitated our CPD-accredited Foundational Coaching Skills Workshops – the competency-building workshops that bridges and aligns the pertinent theory, knowledge and the thinking that are essential for psychology practitioners in coaching. We successfully motivated for SIOPSA’s first online Survey facility – where we gathered and learned from the valuable industry-specific opinions and statistics provided by our members and respondents.

Benefits of Being Part of the Interest Group

  • Work with us to build the brand and professional credibility of psychologists who are coaching and consulting
  • Be part of the research team to consolidate, co-ordinate and distribute new thinking in these fields
  • Work with us in running workshops and talks in these areas
  • Help develop special interest areas in coaching and consulting – such as health and wellness coaching, transformational change

Looking Forward

We are in the process of liaising with the Educational Committee of the HPCSA’s Professional Board of Psychology, regarding the professional alignment of the Code of Practice and the List of Practitioners – (the List of Practitioners aims to provide due recognition to registered psychology practitioners who practice within the field of coaching psychology). As part of the IGCCP’s strategic objectives and inclusive stakeholder-engagement model, we will continue to liaise and build our Value Proposition and our relationships with the key Academic, Corporate and Governmental stakeholders. The IGCCP will continue to represent SIOPSA in the International Coaching and Consulting Psychology spheres. We will utilise this forum to reflect, to learn, and to build on our mandate of professionalising these domains in South Africa. The IGCCP will continue to liaise with the SIOPSA Regional Branches, with regard to hosting CPD-accredited Foundational Coaching Skills and Consulting Workshop. We will continually update and incorporate all the valuable feedback we received from our public consultation of The Code of Practice document, and we will continue to encourage ongoing participation in this regard. We also aim to further encourage broader academic, industry-specific and public consultations, with regard to integrating and consolidating the Code of Practice for Registered Psychology Practitioners in Coaching.

International Congresses for Coaching Psychology

The Coaching Psychology Congress events aim to bring the global coaching psychology community together, whereby strategic partners promote and hold the congress in their respective regions. For more information on upcoming events, you can visit the website.

How to participate

All SIOPSA paid-up members are free to participate. To be on our mailing list, please send an email to: Email: Please refer to the List of Coaching Practitioners and The Code documents and our Facebook page @IGCCPSA

Interest Group for Psycho-Legal

Interest Group Overview

The Interest Group for Psycho-Legal (IGPL) was formed after the 2015 SIOPSA Annual Conference in response to a request from the Road Accident Fund (RAF) that SIOPSA undertake the formal monitoring and training of IOPs in the medico-legal space. IGPL has tasked itself with:

  • the establishment of practice standards and basic requirements for IOPs working in this field;
  • the provision of standardised, relevant training in aspects of psycho-legal work;
  • the establishment of a formal point of reference for psycho-legal practice within SIOPSA and the Industrial and Organisational profession in South Africa
  • a move towards SIOPSA becoming the primary accreditor of IOPs in the medico-legal space.

What are some interesting things the interest group has accomplished?

As the result of the concerns expressed by the RAF insofar as the training, knowledge and calibre of the reports and evidence-giving of IOPs in the medico-legal space were concerned, the decision was taken that the most important and immediate focus needed to be on ‘grass roots’ training so as to ensure standardisation of the assessments and reports of IOPs already in the field, as well as those planning to enter the field. To this end, a ‘road show’ in which a half-day training course, focused on practical skills, and facilitated by the various SIOPSA Regional Chapters, was taken to Port Elizabeth Potchefstroom, Cape Town and Durban, and attended in total by about 100 IOPs, emerging IOPs, students and other non-IOP Health Professionals. In July 2016, a full day Mock Trial was held on the day before the SIOPSA Annual Conference began. PLIG was very fortunate to have the support and assistance of the South African Medico-Legal Association (SAMLA), which, in the form of SAMLA’s National Director of Education, Dr Hennie Becker, shared knowledge, experience and expertise without which the Mock Trial could not have taken place. A number of highly regarded legal, medical and paramedical experts participated in the event without charging for their involvement since all are committed to the continued improvement of standards in the industry.

Why Join (Benefits and Opportunities)?

IGPL has at its heart the improvement of the reputation of IOPs doing psycho-legal work by means of the provision of training at numerous levels in order to standardise IOP reports and the giving of evidence in the Courts. IGPL runs a Helpline for IOPs who need assistance with any aspect of psycho-legal work, no matter how small.

How to join?

At present, all IOPs, emerging IOPs, students and other interested parties who have attended the IGPL training courses and other presentations, such as the SIOPSA Mock Trial, are considered to be de facto members and are on the IGPL mailing list. Requests to be placed on the mailing list so as to be among the first to know about upcoming events can be sent to the SIOPSA Office.

Most recent event: 

The Psycho-Legal Interest Group hosted a free-webinar titled Making sense of Earnings Data for Medico-Legal Report Writing.  To access the powerpoint presentation by the panellists please click on the presenters name.

Jaen Beelders  – Analytico HR

Morag Phillips – Analytico HR

Martin Westcott

Koch Consulting Actuaries

Manoko Ratala

Averile Ryder

Charl du Plessis

Q & A Responses from Panellists

Interest Group for Diversity and Inclusion

Interest Group Overview

The Interest Group for Diversity and Inclusion was established to craft and manage transformation of SIOPSA as a society and a profession. Despite more than two decades of democracy in South Africa and a favourable legislative framework, issues of representation, inclusivity and diversity of the profession of I/O Psychology still lags behind, even though there is a social call to action and national uproar for the profession to lead and shape the transformation agenda. Therefore, the interest group is a social activist and collaborative conscience of the society. The Interest Group was founded at the SIOPSA 2017 Annual Conference. The formation of the interest group was necessitated by various stakeholders and members to ensure that transformation remains a strategic intent and achievable goal of SIOPA.

The primary purpose of the interest group is to do the following:

  • Ensure that the transformation agenda is seen as strategic and implemented to sustain the profession and society for IOPs.
  • Create a society that fosters the diversity and inclusion ethos for all members, including nurturing the IOP talent pipeline.
  • Formalise, standardise and provide training on transformation work within SIOPSA in conjunction with the SIOPSA Academy.

The secondary objectives include:

  • Ensure that SIOPSA is innovative, adaptable and prepared for future technologies and models that will inform the practice of IOP.
  • To support the society’s dream and aspiration for self-regulation of the IOP profession.

Which field of psychology does the interest group target?

The interest group is not targeted at a field of psychology, but it is founded on a multi-disciplinary approach across many areas of study within the profession and practice IOP.

Who can join the Interest Group?

Any member of SIOPSA as written in the constitution is welcome to join the interest group.

Why Join (Benefits and Opportunities)?

The members of the Interest Group for Diversity and Inclusion are individuals that have a passion for inclusivity, diversity and want to contribute to a progressive South Africa, SIOPSA and the IOP profession. Firstly, the main tread that weaves the interest group is to see a better and progressive society, to ensure sustainability. Secondly, to contributes towards thinking of ways, methods and models to achieve true transformation.  Finally, to be part of the legacy which leaves a footprint for success.

How to join?

Members join by expressing interest to join the Interest Group, becoming part of the mailing list and events organised by the interest group. The process of joining an interest group is ratified by the SIOPSA office to ensure proper governance.

  • Interest Group for Psychometry Professionals (new)
  • Interest group for Positive Organisational Psychology (IGPOP)
  • Interest Group for Applied Neuroscience (IGANS)
  • Interest Group for International Association of Cross-Cultural Psychology (IACCP)
Interest Group for Applied Organisational Neuroscience (IGAON)



The purpose of the Applied Organisational Neuroscience Interest Group is to create an awareness of the nature, role and significance of studying and applying neuroscientific research findings to the field of IOP; and to create opportunities for SIOPSA members and South African organisations to become informed and to gain competence in this field. The Interest Group was initiated by Prof Dirk Geldenhuys in 2015.




➢ to act as a community of learning and practice for applied neuro-sciences adopting a science-practitioner stance ➢ to provide opportunities for SIOPSA members (and other interested IOP consultants) to study, practice and share research findings in applied organisational neuroscience. ➢ to present academic and theoretical conferences, practical workshops and discussion forums toward the development of thought leadership in this field. 




  • Becoming a member of the AONS interest group is a great way to learn more about Applied Organisational Neuroscience within the community of I/O Psychologists and Neuroscientists and related professional groups.
  • To join, the conversation contact us at




  1. Branch Events on Organisational Neuroscience
  2. Attendance and Presentation at the International Conference of Neuro-Psychotherapy in Brisbane.
  3. Collaborating with the International Association of Clinical Neuropsychotherapy.
  4. Linking up with other similar organisations /associations / institutes in South Africa and abroad such as the NeuroLeadership Institute, and Neurozone.
  5. Various Workshops at SIOPSA conferences on Applied Neuroscience.
  6. Breakfast sessions: A case for facilitating basic human needs


SIX TARGETS for 2019/2020 and beyond


  1. Growing the membership base of the Interest Group through social media
  2. Crafting an IOP code of best practice for Applied Organisational Neuroscience
  3. Hosting an Applied Organisational Neuroscience Seminar in 2020 – to broaden the scope and depth of practice
  4. Collaboration with the branch footprint in presenting and publishing on “Neuromyths in IOP”
  5. Presenting an AONS one day workshop at the annual SIOPSA conference in 2020 to equip IOPs in understanding the application of neuroscience in IOP.
  6. Initiating and negotiating certified training in Applied Organisational Neuroscience with reputable lead bodies for SIOPSA



Peer reviewed academic articles relating to Organisational Neuroscience (Click on the name of the article to read)

 Ochsner Lieberman – The emergence of social cognitive neuroscience 2001

 2015 Becker – Leveraging neuroscience for smarter approaches to workplace intelligence

2014 Ashkanasy Becker – Neuroscience and organizational behaviour avoiding both neuro-euphoria

2013 Lindebaum – Not quite a revolution scrutinising

2011 Becker – Organizational neuroscience taking organizational theory inside the neural black box 

2009 Becker – Computational cognitive neuroscience


Join us on Facebook – Applied Organisational Neuroscience