[MATHLINK] Special Issue – Environment and Executive Function – Infant Behavior and Development

Andrew David Ribner aribner at nyu.edu
Wed Mar 30 12:42:02 CST 2022

Dear Colleagues,

We invite you to submit abstracts for an upcoming special issue on
influences on the development of early executive function* to be published
in *Infant Behavior and Development.*

While the development of “mature” executive function is a protracted
process that extends from birth through early adulthood (Hughes, 2011;
Huizinga et al., 2006), individual differences in executive function
already have important implications in early childhood. Substantial
individual differences in executive function are evident in the first years
of life (Holmboe et al., 2018; Hendry et al., 2021) and show modest
stability from infancy and toddlerhood to later years (Devine et al., 2019;
Hughes et al., 2020; Hughes & Ensor, 2007); however, much of our
understanding of very early executive function comes from convenience
samples of Western, middle- to upper-income samples. Exceptions to that
largely focus on highlighting differences between normative samples and
those who do not fall into convenience populations (e.g., children raised
in low-income homes, non-White samples, non-industrialized nations). The
goal of this special issue is to take an assets-based approach to unpacking
the mechanisms underlying relations between overarching cultural influences
(e.g., sociodemographic, geopolitical, and cultural characteristics) and
the development of executive function in children under the age of 36

We invite empirical, theoretical, and review papers that address major
environmental influences on executive function during the first 3 years of
life. There are no restrictions on which type of environments submissions
address, but these could include different cultures (including less
traditional cultural comparisons), major social or socioeconomic factors,
major geopolitical factors (such as children growing up under different
political systems, in regions of war or unrest or as refugees), direct and
planned interventions to effect positive change, and ‘natural experiments’
where children naturally grow up under very different conditions.  Topics
may include but are not limited to:

●      Empirical studies with infants (up to 36 months) that address
relations between environmental influences (e.g., sociodemographic,
geopolitical, and cultural characteristics) and executive function through
direct experimentation, observation, or parent report. Longitudinal studies
are particularly encouraged.

●      Studies that interrogate the factor structure and/or measurement of
executive function across different groups of children.

●      Review or theory papers on the role of environmental influences in
executive function development and on how we should approach the study of
early executive function through an assets- or strengths-based (as opposed
to a deficit-based) approach.

●      Intervention studies targeting executive function that will provide
guidelines for parents and educators regarding best practices to promote
positive developmental outcomes.

All authors must submit a preliminary abstract by July 15, 2022 to either
guest editor. Full papers will be requested after the abstract is accepted,
with a final deadline of December 1, 2022.  Potential contributors are
encouraged to contact the guest editor if they have questions. Information
about the journal, including instructions for authors, may be found here:

We look forward to working with you!

Andrew Ribner, University of Pittsburgh (andy.ribner at pitt.edu)
Karla Holmboe, University of Bristol (karla.holmboe at bristol.ac.uk)

Andrew Ribner, PhD

*Department of Applied Psychology*
Developmental Psychology
NYU Steinhardt
New York University
aribner at nyu.edu

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