Insights from the Pompidou Group’s 2022 Executive Training ‘Substance use addictions and online practices"

Wroclaw, Poland 4-7 October 2022
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Insights from the Pompidou Group’s 2022 Executive Training ‘Substance use addictions and online practices

Module II of the 2022 Executive Training focusing on ‘Substance use addictions and online practices’ took place in Wroclaw, Poland, on 4-7 October 2022. The seminar presented different types of actions and practices that can help prevent and mitigate the effects of excessive Internet and electronic device use. Through this seminar participants examined examples of practices in prevention, screening and treatment of behavioural addictions and identified opportunities for actions by different stakeholders. It became clear that Europe seems to lag behind in recognising and addressing the challenges related to problematic Internet use (PIU). While its acknowledged that we do not know all about PIU and the effects and consequences of related addictive behaviours, we certainly know enough to act as the examples of action and practices from different countries show. Even though addictive behaviours related to PIU are not in all aspects similar to other addictions, science and research shows us that in diagnosing a PIU existing knowledge and practices from the fields of drug addiction can already provide responses for those in need of care and treatment today. In bringing about needed changes, the most important role plays the public at large. The big challenge will be to find ways to engage the public in the process of changing the paradigms that drive our behaviours and the perspectives of industries and developers. Participants to the training came to the conclusion that the internet and social media will be likely the ones providing the opportunity, technology and platforms to achieve this.