Federación Iberoamericana de Asociaciones de Psicología (FIAP) 2002-2012: A decade consolidating Iberoamerican Psychology

An overview of FIAP and how the federation has been active in promoting and developing psychological science in Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries.

By Wilson López López, PhD, and María Constanza Aguilar Bustamante

Federación Iberoamericana de Asociaciones de PsicologíaThe Iberoamerican Federation of Psychology Associations (FIAP) was launched in July 2002 within the framework of the III Iberoamerican Congress of Psychology in Bogotá, Colombia, in the presence of psychology association presidents from Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, Spain and Venezuela.1 Additional associations from Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala and Portugal soon joined FIAP as well.2

Since its inauguration, FIAP has sponsored an Iberoamerican Congress of psychology every two years (Chile, 2004; Peru, 2006; Mexico, 2008; Spain, 2010; and Brazil, 2012). The ninth congress will be held in Portugal in 2014.

FIAP carries out projects associated with its mission to “contribute to the development of psychology as science and profession in Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries.” These projects include:

  • PsicoRedalyc — a portal for psychology journals that is part of the information system Redalyc. PsicoRedalyc includes 68 journals, 21,502 articles and 46,510 authors. All the contents are available in open-access and include journals from Argentina (3 journals), Brazil (16), Chile (4), Colombia (12), Costa Rica (1), Spain (18), Mexico (8), Peru (2), Portugal (2) and Puerto Rico (1), as well as the InterAmerican Journal of Psychology and the Review of Latin American Psychology (Revista Latinoamericana de Psicología). PsicoRedalyc is the most complete source of information for Hispanic and Portuguese psychology publications.
  • Ranking of Iberoamerican Psychology (RIP) — a systematic ranking of scientific output in Iberoamerican countries and institutions. This ranking is produced through an alliance with SCImago — a portal that includes journals and country scientific indicators developed from information contained in the Scopus journals database. The RIP uses information on the production in psychology in the Iberoamerican region to rank institutions within countries.
  • FOCAD (Formación Continuada a Distancia). Continuing distance education for psychology has been implemented in Spain and is being extended to all of Iberoamerica.
  • Accreditation and Certification systems are under development. These will address quality assurance for training at all levels of psychology education, as well as professional certification.
  • Support and development for interinstitutional collaboration to develop subareas of the psychology. FIAP is developing alliances to encourage Iberoamerican organizations to contribute to projects such as the Iberoamerican Committee on Psychology in Emergencies (Red Iberoamericana de Psicología de Emergencias, RIPE), or to interact with the Psicofundación and institutions such as the Instituto Superior de Estudios Psicológicos (ISEP). The idea is to foster interinstitutional relations, with the intention of strengthening local initiatives.

In addition, FIAP is developing activities to address further aspects of its mission. These activities include:

  • Research support to promote cooperative projects among the FIAP countries, and
  • Ethical development and public education: support for the processes of both ethical development and inclusion of psychology in public policy discussions.

In addition to these activities, FIAP initiated the Iberoamerican Prizes in Psychology. These awards were first given at the VII Iberoamerican Congress of Psychology in Spain. The first awards were given to Emilio Ribes (Mexico) for lifetime contributions to the scientific development of psychology and to José Rodríguez Valderrama (Colombia) for his contribution to professional development. At the VIII Iberoamerican Congress of Psychology in Brazil, the prize was awarded to psychology professor Joao Claudio Todorov. In addition to these awards, prizes are also given at the Iberoamerican congresses for the best research posters.

FIAP also serves as a catalyst for organizing meetings of the Committee of Iberoamerican Universities of Psychology (Red Universitaria Iberoamericana de Psicología, RUIP), which brings together deans and directors of schools, departments, institutes and programs of psychology throughout the Iberoamerican region to facilitate inter-institutional agreements for cooperation and academic mobility and to foster discussions concerning the processes of education, accreditation and research.

The FIAP congresses have also hosted publishers meetings. At the seventh congress in 2010, the Committee of Editors of Iberoamerican Journals was formed (Red de Editores de Psicología de Iberoamérica). One important function of these meetings, in addition to improving the publication process, is discussing the quality of publications in order to extend the visibility of scientific production in the region.

After ten years, FIAP has a sound financial position that allows it to support the development of new projects. Its growth and continued planning of new projects illustrates FIAP’s potential as a leading institution to promote scientific psychology in Iberoamerica. From the perspective of Colombia, the participation of the Colombian College of Psychologists (Colegio Colombiano de Psicólogos) in FIAP has promoted collaboration both in the Iberoamerican context and internationally.

1Participating associations included Federation of Argentinian Psychologists, Chilean Psychological Association, ABA Colombia, Spanish Psychological Association, Mexican National Psychology Research Council, Peru Psychology Association, Federation of Psychologists of Venezuela.
2Associations included Brazilian Psychological Society, Order of Portuguese Psychologists, Guatemalan Psychological Society, Colombian Psychological Society, Colombian College of Psychologists.