Marco del Giudice (University of New Mexico)
Developmental plasticity: crisis and opportunity
Developmental plasticity in response to the environment is a key biological concept and a major focus in psychology, anthropology, and medicine. In developmental psychology, models of GxE interactions and differential susceptibility have generated much enthusiasm and a growing volume of empirical research. At the same time, research in this area faces some formidable theoretical and methodological challenges. While these challenges are too often ignored or downplayed, they may ultimately open the way to better and more realistic models of person-environment interplay. In this talk I review key unresolved issues in the study of human plasticity, present a selection of new theoretical and empirical findings, and suggest possible ways forward.