Founding Members and Early Trailblazers of the Department
Amedeo P. Giorgi, Ph.D.
Dr. Giorgi was born in New York City in 1931. After completing his undergraduate studies at St. Joseph's College in Philadelphia, he received his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Fordham University. From 1958-60 he worked as a project director in the area of human engineering for Dunlap and Associates. He served as an assistant professor in psychology at Manhattan College from 1960-1962 and joined the faculty at Duquesne in 1962.
Giorgi's professional life has been dedicated to the development and articulation, in a systematic and rigorous way, of psychology as a human science. His life project has been built upon the conviction that psychology as a human science is a viable possibility and a positive attempt to incorporate the insights of existential-phenomenological philosophy into psychology to displace the positivistic philosophy that has shaped and directed psychology from its birth. The fullest expression of Giorgi's position can be found in his book, Psychology as a Human Science: A Phenomenologically Based Approach (1970). In his book, he argues that psychology adopt a human science paradigm concerned with and based upon phenomena given in human experience. To achieve his project, Giorgi has worked with other scholars at Duquesne to develop qualitative and descriptive methodologies for the study of human phenomena. He pioneered the development of the first strictly empirical-phenomenological methodology for human scientific research in the late 1960s and has initiated a number of projects to disseminate the new psychology. In 1970 he began publication and editing of the International Journal of Phenomenological Psychology.
Giorgi's numerous European contacts and worldwide reputation have led to his lecturing at many foreign institutions and have attracted scholars to Duquesne from Japan, Europe, Canada, Australia, and South Africa. Giorgi left the department in 1987 after 25 years of service. Since his departure from Duquesne, he has taught at the University of Quebec at Montreal and the Saybrook Institute in San Francisco, where he is now a Professor Emeritus.