Toward a social care program of research: A population-level study of neighborhood effects on child development

Paul Kershaw, Barry Forer, Lori G. Irwin, Clyde Hertzman, Vanessa Lapointe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

The article reports results from a Human Early Learning Partnership initiative that aims to address limitations within the literature concerning neighborhood effects on child development. Problems include the tendency for studies to (a) rely on small samples of children, (b) focus on high-risk populations, (c) define neighborhood by Census boundaries, (d) attend only to 1 or 2 developmental domains, and (e) adhere to a narrow understanding of socioeconomic status. By collecting data from a near-census of kindergarten children in British Columbia, Canada, using the Early Development Instrument, our research addresses all 5 problems. Findings reported in this article lay the groundwork for the Human Early Learning Partnership's much more ambitious program of social care research that aims to measure directly the processes by which physical and social settings influence human development in the formative early years, rather than to infer them from data routinely collected for other purposes. The article concludes by inviting international colleagues to critically evaluate our program of research in its early days of implementation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)535-560
Number of pages26
JournalEarly Education and Development
Volume18
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes

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