Risk and Resilience

Adaptations in Changing Times

Risk and Resilience

What factors enable individuals to overcome adverse childhoods and move on to rewarding lives in adulthood? Drawing on data collected from two of Britain's richest research resources for the study of human development, the 1958 National Child Development Study and the 1970 British Cohort Study, this 2006 book investigates the phenomenon of 'resilience' - the ability to adjust positively to adverse conditions. Comparing the experiences of over 30,000 individuals born twelve years apart, Schoon examines the transition from childhood into adulthood and the assumption of work and family related roles among individuals born in 1958 and 1970 respectively. The study focuses on academic attainment among high and low risk individuals, but also considers behavioural adjustment, health and psychological well-being, as well as the stability of adjustment patterns in times of social change. This is a major work of reference and synthesis, that makes an important contribution to the study of lifelong development.


 Reviews:

'Much previous work on resilience has been American: it was therefore with great interest that I read this important book based on work done in Britain. It is large scale and its conclusions are authoritative and robust … I think that it is required reading for all psychologists working with children.' The Psychologist

'This is a scholarly and thoughtful book … There is a particularly thorough discussion of the definitions of the concepts of risk and resilience and a highly readable review of the theoretical perspectives, … Indeed, the first two chapters are so well done they should constitute essential reading for all behavioural scientists, mental health practitioners and those involved in forming health and education policy. … The final two chapters on conclusions, outlook and implications for interventions and social policy are as thoughtful and clear as the introduction, with a particularly helpful analysis focusing on the importance of available social and educational resources as well as delineating risks. … This is an excellent academic text that should be essential reference reading for mental health professionals. For researchers in the field of risk and resilience I would deem it fundamental. Psychiatrists-in-training should have access also as they would learn a great deal about the value of longitudinal, non-experimental studies' British Journal of Psychiatry

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