(1) Richard M. Lerner, Bergstrom Chair in Applied Developmental Science, Director, Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development, 301 Lincoln Filene Building, Tufts University Medford, MA 02155
(2) Willis F. Overton, Thaddeus L. Bolton Professor of Psychology, Emeritus, Psychology Department, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA 19122
* Corresponding author E-mail: email@example.com
We summarize briefly contemporary scientific advances in evolutionary biology and epigenetics, and discuss their implications for revising scholarly understanding of human development, especially when framed within relational developmental systems theories. We contrast the evidence in support of a relationally-integrated approach to biological and behavioural (psychological and social) processes with claims about links between evolution and human development emanating from an area of social/behavioural science, Evolutionary Psychology. We note the conceptual and empirical problems of Evolutionary Psychologyand, in turn, highlight the empirical utility of integrated biological and developmental science research framed by relational developmental systems theories.
We make recommendations for future, multidisciplinary research framed by relational developmental systems theories, and point to the implications of data derived from such work for applications to social policies and programmes.