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Amedeo Giorgi: A Research Guide: Home

This guide introduces and contains resources relating to Amedeo Giorgi, whose personal library (the Amedeo Giorgi Alcove) and Archive are located within the Simon Silverman Phenomenology Center.

Portrait of Amedeo Giorgi

Amedeo Giorgi

Photo Credit: University Professors Press. [n.d.] Amedeo Giorgi, PhD. [Digital Image]. Retrieved from

Amedeo P. Giorgi was born in New York City in 1931, and grew up in Philadelphia. He completed his undergraduate studies at St. Joseph’s College in Philadelphia, and received his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Fordham University in 1958.  From 1958 to 1960, he worked as a researcher for Dunlap and Associates, but quickly returned to academia, serving first as an assistant professor at Manhattan College in 1960 and then joining the faculty at Duquesne University in 1962. In 1970, he founded the international Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, acting at its editor through 1993.  He joined the faculty of Saybrook University in 1986 and held a joint appointment with the University of Quebec at Montreal from 1990 until 1995.  He is currently a Professor Emeritus at Saybrook University.

Giorgi’s work is built upon a primary understanding that psychology should adopt a human science paradigm, which is concerned with and based upon phenomena given in human experience. The standard experimental and quantitative procedures being used by mainstream psychology, he argues, are too limited for to truly account for human phenomena.  Therefore, Giorgi developed the first strictly empirical-phenomenological methodology for human scientific research in the late 1960s, based in phenomenological-existential philosophy.  This methodology runs through his authored works, such as Psychology as a Human Science and The Descriptive Phenomenological Method in Psychology.  It may also be found in the more than 100 dissertations Giorgi has directed. 

from Amedeo P. Giorgi Archive. Simon Silverman Phenomenology Center.

Selected Works by Giorgi

Reflection on Certain Qualitative and Phenomenological Psychological Methods

One could describe the status of psychological research today as one in which qualitative methods based upon diverse philosophies have been developing and advancing at a fast pace. It is a time therefore when reflections on this state of affairs are appropriate. The five essays in this book are all concerned with qualitative methods and their philosophical backgrounds. Briefly, the first essay contrasts the relative merits of the three most used philosophical bases for qualitative methods: empirical philosophy, hermeneutics, and Husserlian descriptive phenomenology. The second essay tries to resolve the tensions between descriptive and interpretive methods. Both are of service to science, but they relate to different conditions. The third essay discusses certain pitfalls that should be avoided when conducting psychological research on oneself. The fourth essay describes the extension of certain guidelines when using the descriptive phenomenological method. The fifth essay challenges the assumption of naturalism for psychology and argues for the development of a non-naturalistic method for psychology.

The Descriptive Phenomenological Method in Psychology: a modified Husserlian approach

This comprehensive work from one of the leading thinkers in humanistic psychology provides a thorough discussion of the phenomenological foundations for qualitative research in psychology. Amedeo Giorgi's examination operates out of the intersection of phenomenological philosophy, science, and psychology; such a multidisciplinary approach allows him to challenge several long-standing assumptions about the practice of psychology. Giorgi asserts that empiricism is not the best philosophy for grounding the science of psychology--rather, the broader phenomenological theory of science permits more adequate psychological development. Giorgi draws from Husserl's philosophical principles the reasons for conducting research in psychology, and then offers practical steps for applying a phenomenological method and real examples of applications of the method. In fact, Giorgi proposes a method that is theoretically grounded in phenomenological philosophy and yet treats empirically derived data. This is a rigorous but open qualitative research method that is tolerant of pararational givens as well as one that is supportive of rational criteria. The analyses and methods presented in Phenomenological Method in Psychology will be attractive to psychologists, phenomenologists, and researchers involved in qualitative research throughout social and human science disciplines.

Phenomenology and Psychological Research

This book is both a theoretical justification of a phenomenological and human scientific approach to psychological research and a presentation of findings in the areas of cognitive, clinical, and social psychology.The book is important because it is the most sustained statement to date about a phenomenological approach to psychological research along with original findings to compare with mainstream psychology in crucial areas of psychology: cognitive, clinical, and social psychology.Phenomenology and Psychological Research is further clarification of the phenomenological approach to psychological research along with examples of application in four different content areas: learning and thinking (both examples of alternative approaches to cognitive processes), self-deception (clinical psychology), and criminal victimization (social psychology). As such, it gives the reader who is merely curious about the possibilities of phenomenological approaches a good opportunity to evaluate its fruitfulness, whereas those who are already sympathetic to the approach will find a greater articulation of the theory behind the procedures. Lastly, the reader will find in this study an example of a descriptive and qualitative approach to psychological research that claims to meet both phenomenological and human scientific criteria. It is one of the first books to make such a claim about psychological research.

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This Guide Created By

This LibGuide originally created by Matthew A. Jones, MLIS, 2019.

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