© 2020

Cognitive Evolutionary Therapy for Depression

Therapy Manual


Part of the SpringerBriefs in Psychology book series (BRIEFSPSYCHOL)

Also part of the Best Practices in Cognitive-Behavioral Psychotherapy book sub series (BRIEFSBPCBP)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-viii
  2. Cezar Giosan
    Pages 31-34
  3. Cezar Giosan
    Pages 35-39
  4. Cezar Giosan
    Pages 41-48
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 63-68

About this book


Evolutionary psychology has recently made inroads in clinical psychology, bringing the understanding that, in some cases, mental symptoms are not manifestations of brain disorders, but rather evolved mechanisms that might function in overdrive or signal fitness problems. Thus, improvements in fitness may lead to improvements in those symptoms. Armed with such insights, this brief describes a comprehensive therapy protocol for depression – Cognitive Evolutionary Therapy (CET) –, which incorporates evolutionary understandings of this condition into well-validated cognitive techniques. CET starts with an evaluation of the evolutionary fitness of an individual, which represents the springboard for specific, evolutionary-driven behavioral and cognitive interventions. Based on the fitness evaluation, which takes place at intake, the CET therapist comes pre-equipped with a list of the patient’s fitness problems and can start working on them very early on in therapy, potentially leading to shorter interventions and cost savings. This brief will appeal to clinical psychologists and therapists who frequently employ CBT principles in therapy, as well as to clinicians who want to incorporate insights from evolutionary disciplines into their approaches.


cognitive therapy cognitive-behavioral therapy evolutionary psychology evolutionary psychopathology CBT depression randomized clinical trials RCT trials evolutionary interventions evolutionary psychotherapy Darwinian psychotherapy fitness therapy outcomes

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of BucharestBucharestRomania

About the authors

Cezar Giosan, PhD, Dr. Habil and faculty in the Department of Psychology at the University of Bucharest, has a doctorate in psychology from the New School University. He worked for a long time as a research psychologist in the US top-ranked Department of Psychiatry at Weill Medical School of Cornell University. Dr. Giosan has authored dozens of peer-reviewed publications in impact journals, including studies on the applications of evolutionary psychology in psychological interventions. He has tested, in premiere, in the form of a Randomized Clinical Trial, the efficacy of an evolutionary intervention for depression.

Bibliographic information


“The book does … meets the needs of clinicians and graduate students in psychology and social work.” (Gary B Kaniuk, Doody’s Book Reviews, August 21, 2020)