The Research Network on Early Experience and Brain Development was founded in 1998 to address questions of how the experiences of early childhood are incorporated into the structures of the developing brain, and how, in turn, those changes in the structures of the brain influence behavior. The network explores how knowledge of brain development can guide us in our understanding of behavioral development and vice versa. It focuses specifically on sensitive periods and neural plasticity, the reciprocal phenomena whereby (a) the brain is negatively affected if certain experiences fail to occur within a certain time period, and (b) the brain is altered by experience at virtually any point in the life span. Here we consider not only how the structure of experience is incorporated into the structure of the brain, but also how this knowledge can influence the decisions we make about intervening in the lives of children.
The majority of the Network’s research is conducted by Network members. We do not consider unsolicited proposals.