WELCOME TO SSHD!
A Report on
the 8th Biennieal Meeting of
The Society for the Study of Human Development
8th Biennial Meeting
Fort Lauderdale, FL
November 3-5, 2013
Rethinking Developmental Science across the Life-span/Life-course at the 8th Biennial Meeting of the Society for the Study of Human Development
Jennifer Brown Urban, Montclair State University
The 8th biennial meeting of the Society for the Study of Human Development was held at the Westin Beach Resort and Spa in Fort Lauderdale, Florida November 3-5, 2013. The meeting convened a diverse group of scholars interested in developmental science, and specifically highlighted diverse theory, methods, and applications.
As an organization committed to leading scholarship at the cutting edge of developmental science, the Society for the Study of Human Development included several keynote addresses from leading scholars. Richard M. Lerner described his vision of the scholarly agenda of developmental science across the first quarter of the 21st century. Lynn S. Liben discussed a relational model that considers the dynamic interplay between contextual and individual processes and how this addresses the emergence of stereotyping and prejudice. Toni Antonucci presented implications of recent findings on the relational link between cells and society in terms of developmental theory, methods, and applications. Ingird Connidis discussed family ties over the life course including examples and shortcomings of the macro-micro divide and the value of connecting what happens both inside and outside of families. Cynthia Garcia Coll, described the immigrant paradox and explored whether relational developmental systems theories help us understand why becoming an American may be a developmental risk for youth from immigrant backgrounds.
The meeting also featured two invited plenary symposia, one of which focused on contemporary research methods and the other which focused on contemporary applications. Peter Molenaar and John Nesselroade, together with John J. McArdle, Todd D. Little, and Sy-Miin Chow addressed key issues in state-of-the-art dynamic modeling of relational developmental systems. Jonathan Zaff together with Velma McBride Murry and Brenda Jones Harden represented different theoretical and practical perspectives, geographic foci, and levels of intervention in their discussion of contemporary applications in developmental science particularly as they relate to comprehensive community initiatives.
Reflecting the Society’s commitment to a multidisciplinary, life-span/life-course approach to human development, the meeting also included a diverse array of 12 other symposia and 90 poster presentations. This year also marked the inauguration of the Erin Phelps award which was presented to Gary Greenberg for the best article appearing in the 2011 volume of the SSHD journal Research in Human Development.
Another highlight of the meeting was an Emerging Scholar dinner held at a local restaurant, attended by 10 established and 25 emerging scholars. Many interesting discussions emerged.
Along with the intellectually stimulating presentations and discussions, participants and their families were able to enjoy the warm Florida weather, a fabulous hotel situated directly on the ocean and several well attended receptions; making the 8th biennial meeting of the Society of Human Development a resounding success.