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A New Take On Nature Versus Nurture

Image of Ken Dodge, professor of public policy at Duke
Duke University

Note: This is a rebroadcast from last year.

There is a common metaphor in the scientific community that uses flowers to describe children’s sensitivity to their environments. A child like a dandelion will turn out fine despite the circumstances she is raised in, while a child like an orchid will flounder without a nourishing environment, but blossom with care and support. 

Researchers at Duke University have been picking apart this metaphor and studying the role that long-term interventions play in how children develop throughout their lifetime.

Ken Dodge is the William McDougall professor of public policy at Duke, and he designed an intervention called Fast Track that has been working with the same group of children for more than 20 years.

Host Frank Stasio talks to Dodge about the intervention and new findings that children’s vulnerability may be reflected in their genes.

Anita Rao is an award-winning journalist and the host and creator of "Embodied," a live, weekly radio show and seasonal podcast about sex, relationships & health. She's also the managing editor of WUNC's on-demand content.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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