CID aims to gain new insights in how developmental differences arise between children as a result of the interplay of child characteristics and environmental factors, by filling crucial knowledge gaps on the role of brain development, effects of interventions in the environment, and intergenerational transmission. The research is divided over four work packages (WPs).
Work package 1, rooted in the Utrecht cohort, focuses on longitudinal changes in brain structure and the way these changes relate to genetic and environmental factors, and how this brain development in turn mediates behavioral development.
Work package leader: prof. René Kahn
Work package 2 aims to dissect the reason why not all children are equally responsive to variations in the social environment. It is based on the Leiden cohort, where large-scale experimental-longitudinal interventions of parent and peer behavior allow for testing of which child characteristics shape the effect of (manipulated) environmental factors.
Work package leader: prof. Marinus van IJzendoorn
Work package 3 focuses on the continuity of thriving (or failure to thrive) across three generations, and uses information available in large existing Dutch cohorts. The aim is to determine which factors are involved in transmission of behavior between grandparents, parents, and children.
Work package leader: prof. Wim Meeus
Work package 4 complements the studies in work packages 1-3 with advanced mathematical modeling and animal research. Both behavioral rodent and avian models of social and adaptive behavior will be used, with the additional possibility of detailed analyses focusing on development of involved brain structures. Mathematical models allow better description of longitudinal effects and ensure better data quality.
Work package leader: prof. Marian Joëls