Our institute’s intensive focus on early life mechanisms of lifespan health – beginning in pregnancy – reflects the fact that this is a sensitive period for health and development with an outsized impact on the lifespan. By examining mutable early life mechanisms and their intersection with ongoing developmental experience – we aim to generate science and application that can improve life outlook and health outcomes with the broadest impact possible.
Transform science to promote lifespan health and well-being via transdisciplinary biomedical-social science innovation in the developmental sciences, which provides a pipeline for rapid translation from discovery to application. We propose to harness the full power of the biomedical and social developmental sciences communities at Northwestern to enable high-level integration, scientific collaboration, and productive transdisciplinary training programs.
1.Catalyze developmental sciences innovations at the interface of biomedical and social sciences.
2.Promote team science initiatives that translate developmental discovery to novel prevention initiatives.
3. Train the next generation of leaders and innovators in transdisciplinary developmental sciences.
The vision of the DevSci Institute is to motivate and lead transformative science to engender a “healthier, earlier” population– beginning even before birth– and continuing throughout the lifespan. Via transdisciplinary developmental sciences integration and innovation focused on improving health within diverse family, community, and population contexts, we will enable scientific breakthroughs and applications. These will improve the quality of children’s lives and reduce population burden of common diseases of aging, in a manner fundamentally different from other existing child health initiatives.
Over the past 3 years, we have significantly increased cross-school engagement in the DevSci scientific community. In 2013, DevSci was led by a steering committee of senior faculty members. Since that time, we have restructured our governing body into a University-wide Leadership Council with both executive and advisory committees. The Leadership Council is comprised of more than two dozen senior and junior faculty leaders representing 12 departments across four partnering schools. DevSci’s current structure also includes over 125 affiliate members across Northwestern.