About the talk:
Twin and adoption studies yield a surprising finding: brothers and sisters have some similarity due to their shared genes, but growing up in the same family does not lead to sibling similarity. Identical family environments can affect children, even within the same family, in very different ways. At the same time, socialisation researchers tell us that family factors such as marital conflict, divorce and economic disadvantage put children at risk for poor developmental outcomes. Together, the behavioural genetic and socialisation approaches yield a shared environment paradox. On the one hand, behavioural geneticists insist that the shared family environment plays little to no role in human development. On the other hand, socialisation research documents robust prediction from a variety of shared environmental factors to important developmental outcomes. How can both of these statements be true? I argue that parents may not be as influential as we think, and that idiosyncratic pathways are the essence of children’s development.
About Prof Alison Pike:
Alison Pike is a Professor of Child & Family Psychology in the School of Psychology at the University of Sussex. Her research focuses on the antecedents and consequences of family relationships, with a particular focus on siblings, and differential experiences of children within the same family. This work has used cross-cultural, family and twin designs to facilitate an understanding at multiple levels of analysis. Prof Pike has appeared as an expert on the BAFTA-nominated documentary series Secret Lives of 4-, 5-, & 6-year-olds, and the Secret Lives of Brothers & Sisters.
The Elephant And Castle
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