SRCD ERI Committee Pre-conference 

The ERI committee along with the Equity and Justice committee and the Asian, Black, and Latino Caucuses are excited to announce our pre-conference on Wednesday March 20, 2019 prior to the SRCD Biennial Meeting in Baltimore, MD.

In 2015, the United States Census projected that by 2044, the U.S. will become a “majority- minority” country with no racial/ethnic group having a numerical majority. This shift is expected to occur for youth under the age of 18 by 2020. These demographic shifts challenge developmental scientists to examine unique and universal processes that promote the growth, thriving, and resilience of these populations in this new landscape and also take into account systems of oppression, power, privilege, racial justice and structural disadvantage. International perspectives are also critical as global patterns of immigration and migration also have led to the increased diversification across the world. Building on key work done in the 1990s and 2000s (Helms et al,, 2005; Spencer & McLloyd, 1990; Garcia Coll et al., 1996; Knight et al., 2009; Spencer, 2006), this pre-conference will focus on measuring and conceptualizing “minority” populations within the context of the greater diversification of the U.S. (e.g., mono-racial/ethnic individuals as well as multiracial/ children and youth). The goals of the pre-conference are as follows: 1) to identify best practices in the conceptualization and measurement of race and ethnicity in developmental science at the individual and contextual levels 2) to stimulate a dialogue that translates to an actionable agenda designed to tackle issues of conceptualizing and measurement of key constructs of associated with race/ethnicity and 3) to highlight key strategies for building interdisciplinary teams to conduct ethical and responsible work with diverse populations that include scholars of color.

The pre-conference will result in recommendations for scholars on how to move beyond description and achieve deeper measurement in our research across all methodologies (i.e., quantitative and qualitative). Additionally, working breakout groups will focus on critical issues in developmental science with diverse populations focusing on measurement, methodology, and ethics, and a follow-up salon/roundtable discussion at the biennial conference will highlight key recommendations on how to build interdisciplinary and collaborative research teams that bring the necessary expertise to tackle issues of race and ethnicity in the U.S and abroad. At the conclusion of the conference, participants will have a better understanding of how we forge ahead to use and translate our scholarship to address the ethnic and racial issues of the U.S. and across the globe in the Spirit of 2044.



Millennium Scholars Program

It has been the practice for many of those who have been elected as President of SRCD to identify a theme of emphasis during their term in the office. The theme that Frances Degen Horowitz chose during her presidency of SRCD was influenced by her belief that the study and investigation of how children develop would benefit from attracting more individuals from diverse communities who would commit their talents to the field of child development. Accordingly, SRCD decided, in 1999, to establish the “Millennium Fellows Program” with the goal of encouraging potential scholars and investigators from a diversity of backgrounds to choose to spend their professional lives in the field of child development. The name was changed to the Frances Degen Horowitz Millennium Scholars Program after the 2005 SRCD Biennial Meeting to honor the program’s founder.

The Frances Degen Horowitz Millennium Scholars Program was developed as a vehicle to encourage and support students from underrepresented groups to pursue graduate work in developmental science and related disciplines. Supporting the goals of underrepresented students interested in the field of developmental science is becoming increasingly important as the United States undergoes demographic shifts with combined minority populations projected to become the majority by 2044. This shift will happen in the under 18 population by 2020.

Individuals from diverse racial, ethnic and disciplinary groups are recruited to serve as mentors to scholars to members of underrepresented groups. Through participation in the Millennium Scholars Program, underrepresented students are given the opportunity to attend the SRCD Biennial meeting, special preconference activities, and develop lasting mentoring relationships. These experiences will enable them to gain valuable exposure to the field and allow them to interact not only with their mentors, but also with students, participants and professionals in attendance for the conference.

This year we have matched scholars and mentors in advance of the biennial meeting to allow for some contact prior to the biennial and to foster continued discussion after the biennial ends. Also, this is the first year that scholars will receive specific feedback from their mentor on a research project that they are (or have been) developing. We hope that the MSP is a catalyst for continued connection among mentors and scholars. It is our hope that mentor pairings outlast the conference!


Hidden Figures in Developmental Science

The ERI committee, in partnership with the Teaching committee, is launching a project called “Hidden Figures in Developmental Science” to highlight the achievements of scholars of color. Archival footage as well as video of current scholars of color will be combined to create short videos summarizing research topics representing the full range of developmental domains and across developmental ages. These video resources will be disseminated to undergraduate instructors in psychology/human development as well as high school teachers of advanced placement psychology to increase the awareness of students of the role scholars of color have played in advancing developmental science both currently as well as in the past.

Videos coming soon!!!!


Graduate Student/Early Career Working Group

The major goal of the working group is to provide support and mentoring to early career scholars and graduate students of color to facilitate their research and professional development with the recognition that support early on can be instrumental in professional success as an academic. To this end, we are exploring 1) the possibility of a summer research institute, and looking for avenues for funding this initiative and 2) grants to support pilot research for graduate students.


NIH Grant Bootcamp 

The goal of the NIH proposal writing boot camp was to provide a professional development experience for researchers of African descent in the developmental sciences to support their effectiveness in winning awards for their NIH proposals given the disparity in R01 grants. The bootcamp was led by Eleanor Seaton, prior ERI committee chair. The boot camp occurred from July 16 – July 18, 2017 at the SRCD office in Washington DC. The mentors were Cleopatra Caldwell, Margaret O. Caughy, Susan Rivera, Brendesha Tynes and Tiffany Yip. In addition, Dr. Richard Nakamura, the director of the Center for Scientific Review at NIH, visited the group to discuss NIH strategies for enhancing diversity in the funding pipeline. Scholars included Valerie Adams-Bass, Riana Anderson, Nicole Gardner-Neblett, Heather Jones, Fantasy Lozada, Monique Mills, Enrique Neblett, and Dawn Witherspoon. Scholars received individualized feedback from their mentor as well as group-based feedback on their proposals. This initiative was funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.


Suggested Reviewer Compendium

In an effort to help increase diversity in granting agency reviewers, the ERI committee created a suggested reviewer compendium. This compendium is a directory of potential reviewers who identify as developmental scientists. Although this resource was originally designed for NIH, the compendium has been shared with many other granting agencies (e.g., NSF, IES, and the National Academies of Sciences). The compendium serves as a tool for review officers to help them identity scholars with the requisite expertise to review a diverse range of proposals. This initiative was funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.