YOUth aims to understand why some children develop problematic behaviour and why other show resiliency. Understandig this is vital, as there is a growing consencus that these problem behaviours represent the single greatest threat to be - immediate and long-term - health of youth in our nation.
Childhood (including puberty) is characterised by rapid and profound changes in the brain, accompanied by biological and psychological change. Consequently, this is a critical period for the development of behavioural, psychological and psychiatric problems. Indeed, across child development, psychiatric disorders are the most important cause of burden of disease in high-income countries.
For instance, 23% of all disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) in children between 0 - 14 years old are attributable to psychiatric disorders. Moreover, children without psychiatric disorders also often experience behavioural problems that are equally disruptive, at a personal, familial and societal level. This makes it crucial to better understand how such behavioural changes arise, and to what extent they are related to changes in brain development.
YOUth aims to investigate how neurocognitive development in the general population mediates the influence of biological, child-related and environmental determinants on the development of social competence and behavioural control in children.