Dr. Ian Stevensonís series of detailed books about persons who claim to remember previous lives includes Cases of the Reincarnation Type; Volumes 1 2 and 3. In total, they detail 32 cases. Dr. Stevenson also published 35 new cases and reported on each in a widely read publication, titled Telepathic Impressions. However, his best known work is Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation. I meet with Dr. Stevenson in his office at The University of Virginia, where he is head of the Department of Psychiatry, in 1998. His chief concern was to not have his work presented in non-scientific publications, especially ones dealing in parapsychology or the occult. He emphized to me that all his studies were objective and that he made no assumptions about the factual existence or non-existance of reincarnation. He wanted to make sure I didnít allow his work to be misrepresented. I felt a scientific kinship with him and we had a far ranging interview which reinforced my faith in scientific investigation of the paranormal. Sometime during our lunch I was sure he was a skeptic and other times I thought he might be a believer .To be clear, he was a believer in the existance of the unexplained. These volumes add evidence to our belief that some persons can describe the life of a deceased person they did not know. How they can do this is not yet known. Dr. Stevenson suggests that reincarnation may be the best explaination, although it is not the only one possible.
The Division of Perceptual Studies (DOPS) was founded at UVA in 1967 by the late Dr. Ian Stevenson as a result of a grant from the inventor of the Xerox process. Dr. Stevenson passed away February 8, 2007. For 35 years, Dr. Stevenson was director of DOPS. Upon Dr. Stevenson's retirement in 2002, Dr. Bruce Greyson, faculty member at the Division and long-time editor of the Journal of Near-Death Studies, was appointed as Director of the Division and assumed the Carlson Professorship. The research facilities were updated with a NeuroImaging Laboratory and an expanded Ian Stevenson Memorial Library.
DOPS researchers are dedicated to the use of scientific methodology in their investigation of a range of such phenomena that so far have defied adequate explanation. In particular, the Division's research has focused on the apparent persistence of perception and consciousness after the death of the physical body.