- National Scientific Council on the Developing Child
- National Forum on Early Childhood Policy and Programs
- Global Children's Initiative
- Frontiers of Innovation
- Science of Health and Development Initiative
- Students, Education and Leadership Development
The Science of Early Childhood
A growing body of scientific evidence shows that early influences—whether positive or negative—are critical to the development of children’s brains and their lifelong health. Learn about key concepts in the science of early childhood development through a variety of print publications, videos and other multimedia. More >>
Journal Features Center Affiliates’ Work on Biology of Early Adversity
The developmental and biological consequences of early social adversity are explored in a special supplement of the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) published in print on Oct. 16, 2012. “Biological Embedding of Early Social Adversity: From Fruit Flies to Kindergartners” features articles by Center Director Jack P. Shonkoff and Center-affiliated Harvard faculty members Takao Hensch and Charles A. Nelson III. In addition to the work of Shonkoff and Nelson, who are also members of the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child, the supplement also contains articles by several other Council members: W. Thomas Boyce; Greg J. Duncan; Nathan A. Fox; Megan R. Gunnar; and Bruce McEwen.
Toxic Stress Response: The Facts
Learning how to cope with adversity is an important part of healthy child development. However, when that adversity is severe, frequent, or prolonged - and occurs in the absence of supportive adult relationships - it can induce a potentially damaging toxic stress response in a child's body and brain. This feature describes toxic stress response; how it differs from two other stress responses, positive and tolerable; and how it can be prevented or even reversed. The page also answers frequently asked questions and provides a list of related reading.
Reports & Working Papers
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About the Council
Find out about the Council’s mission, members, and staff. More >>
Learn about the Council's unique, multi-disciplinary, multi-university group of scientists and scholars. More >>
The Council has created a series of publications to marry the science of early childhood and brain development with state-of-the-art communications research designed to effectively translate that knowledge for non-scientific audiences. More >>
Major support for the Council has been provided by: the Birth to Five Policy Alliance, the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, Casey Family Programs, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Norlien Foundation, and the Pierre and Pamela Omidyar Fund, an advised fund of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation.