The Nordic Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Research Meeting and our Scandinavian Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology: Yesterday, today, and tomorrow together


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Scandinavian Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology

Psychiatric Research Unit, Region Zealand

Subject: Medicine


eISSN: 2245-8875




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VOLUME 6 , ISSUE 3 (December 2018) > List of articles

The Nordic Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Research Meeting and our Scandinavian Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology: Yesterday, today, and tomorrow together

Sven Bölte / André Sourander

Citation Information : Scandinavian Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology. VOLUME 6 , ISSUE 3 , ISSN (Online) 2245-8875, DOI: 10.21307/sjcapp-2018-016, December 2018 © 2018.

License : (CC-BY-NC-ND-4.0)

Published Online: 20-December-2018



This issue of the Scandinavian Journal of Child Psychiatry and Psychology (SJCAPP) includes a collection of 57 abstracts from the Nordic Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Research Meeting (NordCAP) 2018, August 30 to 31, in Turku, Finland, hosted by the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Turku. The abstracts contain most of the meetings’ keynotes, other oral presentations, and posters and cover a considerable range of current child and adolescent psychiatric research in the Nordic countries, with a specific focus on intervention and epidemiology. Some contributions could not be printed here, as their contents showed still preliminary or partly confidential data or findings. This issue of SJCAPP is the product of a recently established fruitful collaboration between SJCAPP and NordCAP, aiming to generate synergies in Nordic youth mental health research. We are in good faith that we will make this collaboration a long-lasting tradition.

We believe that NordCAP will motivate valuable Nordic born submissions to SJCAPP and SJCAPP will make NordCAP an even more attractive assembly point for Nordic child and adolescent psychiatry researchers, embracing all disciplines in the field, and explicitly welcoming not only colleagues from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, but also the Baltic countries. NordCAP and the SJCAPP have distinct histories, but largely overlapping goals in promoting high-quality Nordic research and giving Nordic researchers space to present their work and visions. Naturally, while Nordic research is a focus of NordCAP and SJCAPP, international contributions are always the most welcome, too. Now NordCAP’s and SJCAPP’s paths have crossed to share a bit of their future. SJCAPP has still a rather short, but steady and dynamic history, while NordCAP has a far longer tradition. Nevertheless, there have seemingly been some challenges to its continuity.

The first issue of SJCAPP was published in 2013 using the OJS system at the Aarhus State Library in Denmark. In late 2016 the Journal changed its platform and is now run under Exceley Publisher’s technical solutions and the Editorial Manager. In total, the journal now has published 93 articles in six volumes over the years, mostly from Scandinavia, but also from abroad. The current unofficial impact factor is 0.74. Web statistics tell us 5288 unique views in total, and it seems like that we are about to finally also enter Thomson Reuters Citation Index, Scopus, and PubMed/Medline, signifying a true breakthrough for SJCAPP status, reputation and further development. So far, the journal is still an open access journal, with no fees taken. Costs have been covered by generous and unlimited funds by the Region Zealand Psychiatry, a Nordic grant from the Swedish Research Council, and the Pediatric Research Foundation at Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital in Stockholm.

Regarding the history of NordCAP, we have tried to reconstruct it, as best as we could, but can take no guarantees because much we succeeded and the story we can tell is apparently incomplete at this point, and lacks detail. Special thanks to Kirsten Hørder, Nils Bilenberg, Einar Heiervang, Hans-Christoph Steinhausen, and Per Hove Thomsen, who kindly assisted in putting together some of the pieces. According to the information we have, NordCAP started with a number of Nordic research courses covering some 1 to 6 days in duration in the 1980s and 1990s and aiming at an enhancement of research skills in child and adolescent psychiatrists in the Nordic countries, especially in young investigators. The initiative was sponsored by the Nordic Council (, and among the leaders of the effort at this time were Ingrid Spurkland, Sonja Heyerdal and Inger Helene Vandvik from Norway, as well as Anne-Rose Wang and Per Hove Thomsen from Denmark. The workshops circulated across the Nordic countries and were hosted by local child and adolescent psychiatrists in:

  • - Norway: “Methods of Family Assessment in Research (1988)

  • - Denmark: “Qualitative and quantitative methods” (1989)

  • - Iceland: “Epidemiology in child and adolescent psychiatry” (1990)

  • - Norway: “Treatment research in child and adolescent psychiatry” (1993)

  • - Sweden: “Neurobiological assessment tools”


  • - Finland: “Depression in child and adolescent psychiatry” (1997)

  • - Denmark: “Epidemiology in child and adolescent psychiatry” (1998)

In addition, other related research workshops were arranged with the purpose of strengthening academic child and adolescent psychiatry and made possible by the Nordic Council, such as the one for PhD students on “Genes and Human Behavior” in Fåborg in Denmark, organized by Kirsten Hørder and Christopher Gillberg in 1997. After all these workshops and courses over a longer period of time, finally a Nordic child and adolescent psychiatry research network was established and the financial support of the Nordic Council ended.

Unfortunately, from around the millennium shift to the year 2008, we could not retrieve any proper information documenting the further development of Nordic CAP research collaboration. However, it seems like that the network during this time somehow lost steam, before the Nordic network and meeting tradition was reanimated by Hans-Christoph Steinhausen in 2009, after several years of non-existence. Steinhausen hosted the first two of the re-installed meetings with some 50 to 60 participants and Einar Heiervang continued with another conference before Steinhausen took initiative again, each in:

  • - Denmark [Aalborg], with keynote lectures by Peter Jensen and Eric Taylor (2009)

  • - Denmark [Dronninglund], with a keynote lecture by Paul Lichtenstein (2010)

  • - Norway [Oslo], with a keynote lecture by Brad Peterson (2012)

  • - Denmark [Middelfart], with a keynote lecture by Jan Buitelaar (2014)

During this time, Steinhausen also reached out to colleagues all over the Nordic countries in order to re-establish a research network and structure around NordCAP to ensure its survival and continuity. Thereafter, one or more representatives for each Nordic country took responsibility for the continuation of collaboration: Kerstin Plessen, Niels Bilenberg, Hans-Christoph Steinhausen (Denmark), Bertrand Lauth (Iceland), Torunn Stene Nøvik [later Einar Heiervang] (Norway), Eeva Aronen, Kumpulainen Kirsti (Finland), and Kerstin Malmberg, Sven Bölte (Sweden). The subsequent NordCAP conference was then hosted by Sven Bölte and held in:

  • - Sweden [Stockholm], with keynote lectures by Agyris Stringaris and Hans-Christoph Steinhausen (2016), again with about 50 participants.

The next and for the time being latest meeting was hosted by André Sourander and held in:

  • - Finland [Turku], with about 160 delegates from 11 countries, and key note lectures by Alan S. Brown (Columbia University, USA), Henning Tiemeier (Harvard University, USA), Heli Malm and Christina Salmivalli (University of Turku, Finland), David Mataix-Cols, Eva Serlachius and Sven Bölte (Karolinska Institutet, Sweden), Hans-Christoph Steinhausen (University of Basel, Switzerland), Niels Bilenberg (University of Odense, Denmark), and Jane Chang (King’s College London, UK). There was also an international preconference attached targeting global child mental health challenges, including presentations from e.g., Bertrand Lauth (University of Iceland, Iceland), David Ndetei (University of Nairobi, Kenya), Ahmed Malalla AlAnsari (Arabian Gulf University, Bahrain), Lars Lien (Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences & University of Tromsø, Norway) and Sigita Lesinskiene (Vilnius University, Lithuania).

Following the Turku meeting, a strategic NordCAP business meeting was held to clarify the board member roles and to improve the organizational structure and efficiency of the research network. Here, André Sourander was elected to chair NordCAP for the upcoming 3 years. As co-chair, Eva Henje Blom (Umeå, Sweden) was suggested, who later accepted the invitation. The next meeting is planned to be held in Reykjavik (Iceland) in June 2020, hosted by Betrand Lauth. Since NordCAP 2014, the meeting is intended to take place bi-annually, circulating across the member states. The board also reminded itself of the roots of NordCAP, which are strongly anchored in the will to support early stage researchers. So future NordCAP will surely be coined by rich space for PhD students and other early stage researchers to present and discuss their projects and research plans.

In conclusion, we see with pleasure and enthusiasm the positive and energetic progress of both our Journal and NordCAP, and their new collaboration. Obviously, the latter is a win-win situation for both and above all a boost for Nordic child and adolescent mental health research.