News

Lisa Gennetian  and Marta Tienda, Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University, co-edited a recent volume of The Annals  of the American Academy of Political and Social Science titled Investing in Latino Children and Youth. Their introduction summarizes the volume’s contributions and policy implications across its broad coverage of topics in housing, education, health, and social policy, considering geographic variation and diversity of Latinx children and youth.

In newly published  research, DUPRI  investigators, Kenneth Dodge and Jennifer Lansford and their colleagues, assessed  the Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on alcohol and illicit substance use among adults without children, parents, and adolescents through two studies with five samples from independent ongoing U.S. longitudinal studies including Fast Track, Parenting Across Cultures (PAC), The Great Smoky Mountain Study (GSMS), the Prospective Study of Infant Development (PSID) and The Child Development Project (CDP).

Duke Predoctoral students, Liann Tucker (Sociology), Ruth Wygle (Sociology), Sarah Petry (Sanford School of Public Policy), and Lindsay Yingzhi Xu   (Sociology),  will participate  in  the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) Annual Academy, December 1-3, 2021. The International Max Planck Research School for Population, Health and Data Science (IMPRS-PHDS), hosts a unique three-year doctoral program that merges demography, epidemiology and data science. The program equips doctoral students not only with advanced knowledge of the theory and methods of demography and epidemiology, but also with strong technical skills in statistics, mathematical modeling, and computational and data management methods. Duke University is one of 10 academic institutions throughout the world that are affiliated with the program, offering  students this exceptional training opportunity.

Duke Population Research Institute Representation at the 2021 Gerontological Society of America (GSA) (Virtual) Scientific Meeting Konstantin Arbeev, Associate Research Professor, SSRI, Duke University Presentation Title: Genes Involved in Physiological Dysregulation and Decline in Resilience: Role in Alzheimer’s Disease  Session: Novel Genetic and Cognitive Findings From the Long Life Family Study Saturday November 13, 2021 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM Konstantin Arbeev, Associate Research Professor, SSRI, Duke University Presentation Title: Expanding the Scope of Administrative Health Records Through Advanced Statistical Methods Session: Expanding the Scope of Administrative Health Records Through Advanced Statistical Methods Friday November 12, 2021 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM (see full posting for complete listing)

A new study by Anna Gassman-Pines, Associate Professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke, shows that parents' and children’s distress spiked with COVID-19 school closures in March 2020 and remained elevated. Food insecurity increased substantially with closures, but families recovered to previous levels. This text-message survey of Pennsylvania families taking part in the school-based, backpack food assistance program from January through May 2020 provided data about family well-being just prior to and at the beginning of the pandemic. The study highlights the importance of local food assistance programs in battling Food Insecurity (FI), particularly during the pandemic. Moreover, finding suggest that monetary support to allow families to care for children at home without facing extreme income or productivity Credit, could alleviate mental health issues associated with psychological distress related to the pandemic.

Using data from two longitudinal studies, Fast Track and the Child Development Project, Jennifer Lansford, Research Professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke, Kenneth Dodge, William McDougall Distinguished Professor of Public Policy Studies at Duke, and colleagues examined how an individual’s attitudes toward peers and an individual's substance use develops from early adolescence to middle adulthood. This study found that peer selection may influence substance use more than influence and that perceptions of peers’ substance use in early adulthood predicted adults’ use in their fourth decade for cannabis, alcohol and opioids. Intervention efforts sometimes attempt to change norms about substance use by providing adolescents with information that their peers engage in less substance use or are less approving of substance use than individuals perceive them to be . An implication study findings for prevention efforts is that attempts to change individuals’ own use directly may be as effective as efforts to change individuals’ perceptions of peer norms.

In their Science Review, Christopher Wildeman, Professor of Sociology, Duke University, and  co-author, Hedwig Lee, Professor of Sociology, University of Washington, St. Louis,  assess how mass incarceration  has affected families over the past five decades. Wildeman and Lee find that nearly half of all young adults in the U.S. have an immediate family member who has been jailed. Through their analysis, they reach several  conclusions. First, family member incarceration is now common for American families. Second, individuals who will eventually have a family member incarcerated are worse off than those who never will, even before the incarceration takes place. Third, family member incarceration has negative effects on families above and beyond these preexisting disadvantages. And finally, policy interventions that address the precursors to family member incarceration and seek to minimize family member incarceration would best enhance family well-being. Authors content that if the goal is to help all American families thrive, then the importance of simultaneous changes in social and criminal justice policy cannot be overstated.

In the introduction to  the RSF Journal of the Social Sciences journal volume edited by Christina Gibson-Davis, Professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University, and Heather Hill, Professor in the Daniel J. Evans School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Washington, authors examine the impact of wealth on child well-being, such as in the quality of childcare and education, as well as instability in the home and community.

In  a recent publication in the Journal of Research in Adolescence, Kenneth A. Dodge, William McDougall Distinguished Professor of Public Policy and Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University,  Jennifer Lansford, Research Scientist at the Duke University Center for Child and Family Policy, and colleagues, investigate slow life history strategies and increases in externalizing (anger and argumentativeness) an internalizing (anxiety and depression) problems among US youth during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Duke University’s James Moody, Professor in the Department of Sociology, and collaborators Lisa Keister, Professor in the Department of Sociology, and Dana Pasquale, Instructor in the Department of Population and Health Sciences, intend to build  and test a fully integrated Agent Based Model (ABM) of disease spread and socio-economic outcomes, under their recently funded NICHD R21 award, “Economic security and health disparity in COVID-19: A computational modeling approach.” Typical models for epidemic spread ignore social differentiation by race/ethnicity, working status, and social context despite the importance of these factors in fundamentally shaping epidemic exposure risk, burden of disease, and the resulting economic hardships associated with disease and disease mitigation efforts. Alternatively, Agent- based models (ABM) provide an approach that can more easily account for differential exposure, care heterogeneity, and sociologically relevant behavioral feedback processes that internally shape disease transmission, job insecurity, savings, and activity.