Multiple-time-scale design and analysis pushing toward real-time modeling of complex developmental processes

Nilam Ram, Manfred Diehl

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

37 Scopus citations


Key postulates of the life-span developmental framework (Baltes, Lindenberger, & Staudinger, 2006), developmental systems theory (Ford, 1987; Overton & Lerner, 2012), probabilistic epigenesis (Gottlieb, 2007), and the bioecological framework (Bronfenbrenner & Morris, 2006) all include the idea that human development is multiply determined. Influences at different levels (e.g., neurobiological, psychological, social, and cultural/ecological) are reciprocally interlinked to produce overall behavioral development and developmental plasticity (Lerner, 1984; Li, 2003). This complexity means that development proceeds at different rates in different behavioral domains and during different periods of the life span, and in different ways for different individuals (e.g., multidirectionality; Baltes, 1987). As such, the study of developmental phenomena, under optimal circumstances, calls for multivariate observation and analysis at multiple levels and on multiple time scales (Li, 2003; Li & Freund, 2005). Studying change inherently leads to questions about the time scale(s) on which those multivariate observations should be assessed and modeled, and, more generally, how the functional processes that manifest at different time scales are connected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Intraindividual Variability Across the Life Span
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781136285233
ISBN (Print)9780415534864
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Psychology
  • General Social Sciences


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