Upcoming Seminars

Course Information

The Science of a Meaningful Life: Practicing Mindfulness & Compassion (UCB-18)

This ground-breaking, one-day conference will explore the important connections between mindfulness and compassion. What are they, and how are they similar or distinct? How does one promote the other—for instance, how does mindfulness support the practice of self-compassion? What does the science of mindfulness suggest about the human propensity for compassion, and vice versa? Which research-tested programs have been shown to boost mindfulness and/or compassion, and with what specific results?

The roster of speakers will include some of the world’s leading experts on the science and practice of mindfulness and compassion, including best selling author Jon Kabat-Zinn, a pioneer in the clinical application of mindfulness. They will distill the strongest science and evidence-based practices involving mindfulness and compassion, focusing especially on the “pro-social” dimension to mindfulness—how it deepens our relationships with others. This seminar will also offer practical strategies and techniques for cultivating mindfulness and compassion to reduce stress in oneself and others.

The event will include presentations from experts, including a keynote by Kabat-Zinn, and breakout sessions offering first-hand training in some of the top research-based practices, including Kristin Neff’s self-compassion practice and Stanford’s Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT). We will also hear “stories from the field” from people who have successfully applied the science to the real world, creating programs that foster mindfulness and compassion in schools, workplaces, health care, and beyond.

The underlying goal of the event is to support a large and growing movement around mindfulness and compassion--a movement we want to fuel with science. It will empower attendees with a deeper understanding of mindfulness and compassion, explaining what programs are working in this realm, with what effects, and with what research behind them, so that attendees can incorporate these evidence-based practices into their personal and professional lives.

The event will include the following:

  • Keynote talks from leading experts in the fields of compassion and mindfulness, including Jon Kabat-Zinn (top right), Dacher Keltner (bottom right), Kristin Neff (bottom left), and Paul Gilbert (top left);
  • Breakout sessions that provide first-hand experience with mindfulness and compassion practices that have been tested by research;
  • A panel of leaders who have created programs that foster mindfulness and compassion in schools, workplaces, health care, and beyond.

This conference is co-hosted by the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley and Mindful magazine.


This event will be webcast live! Attend in-person or online.

With the webcast, you’ll watch real-time video of the event, including slides, be able to submit questions to the presenter online, and receive CE credits —all from the comfort of your home, office, or anywhere with an Internet connection. You will be emailed prior to the event with course materials and a login and password for the webcast.

*Attendees can receive 6 CE credit hours for attending in-person or online.*

Attendees will be able to:

  • Distill the strongest science and evidence-based practices around mindfulness and compassion, exploring the important connections between the two concepts
  • Empower a large audience to apply cutting-edge science on these topics to their personal and professional lives
  • Explain what the most effective programs are in this realm, why -- according to research – they work, and with what outcomes
  • Help educators and mental health practitioners identify best practices for promoting compassion and mindfulness among those they serve, and to understand how these practices often go hand-in-hand.


8:30 - 9:00 a.m. Registration and check in;

9:00-9:10             Welcome Ann Shulman, Greater Good Science Center Executive Director

9:10-10:10          Keynote by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D.

10:10-10:30       Break

10:30-12:00       Scientific & clinical perspectives on mindfulness & compassion, with:

·       Kristen Neff, Ph.D., on relating mindfulness to compassion and self-compassion

·       Dacher Keltner, PhD., on the neuro-psychology of mindfulness & compassion

·       Paul Gilbert, Ph.D., on Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT)

Presentations followed by Q&A and discussion, including Jon Kabat-Zinn

·       Moderator: Emiliana Simon-Thomas, Greater Good Science Center Science Director

12:00-1:00          Box lunch provided

1:00-2:15             Breakouts:

·       Self-compassion practice, led by Kristen Neff

·       Cognitive-Based Compassion Training (CBCT), led by Brooke Dodson-Lavelle (Emory University)

·       Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT), led by TBD (Stanford University)

2:15-2:20             Break

2:20-3:45             Stories from the field: 4-5 speakers (TBD--will add to this section with details as confirmed by speakers with years of professional experience in the fields of: education, health care, business/leadership, prison, veterans, lawyers, birthing/parenting)

Moderator: Barry Boyce, Mindful

3:45-4:00             Break

4:00-5:00             Reflections and discussion, with Jon Kabat-Zinn, Dacher Keltner, Kristin Neff, Paul Gilbert


Continuing Education

Continuing Education is co-sponsored by R. Cassidy Seminars.

Presented by the Greater Good Science Center, and co-sponsored by the International House at UC Berkeley

The Science of a Meaningful Life seminar series is made possible through a generous grant from the Quality of Life Foundation.

Psychologists: R. Cassidy Seminars is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists. R. Cassidy Seminars maintains responsibility for this program. (6) CE hours.

Social Workers CA: Course meets the qualifications for (6) hours of continuing education credit for MFTs and/or LCSWs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences, Provider #PCE418.

Marriage and Family Therapists CA: Course meets the qualifications for (6) hours of continuing education credit for MFTs and/or LCSWs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences, Provider #PCE418. This course provides 6 CE hours.

Occupational Therapists: Occupational therapists will receive a certificate of completion for (6) CE hours.

Nurses CA: Provider approved by the CA Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #CeP12224, for (6) contact hours.

Satisfactory Completion: Participants must have paid tuition fee, signed in, attended the entire seminar, completed an evaluation, and signed out in order to receive a certificate. Failure to sign in or out will result in forfeiture of credit for the entire course. No exceptions will be made. Partial credit is not available.

Cancellation Policy: Refund (minus $25 administrative fee) when canceling prior to 7 days before the workshop. No refund within 7 days of the seminar.

Disability Access: If you require ADA accommodations please contact our office 30 days or more before the event. We cannot ensure accommodations without adequate prior notification.

Please Note: Licensing Boards change regulations often and while we attempt to stay abreast of their most recent changes, if you have questions or concerns about this course meeting your specific board’s approval, we recommend you contact your board directly to obtain a ruling.