ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B

›› 2009, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (11): 1102-1122.

Previous Articles    

The Center of Lifespan Psychology at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development: Conceptual Agenda and Illustration of Research Activities

Shu-Chen Li, Martin Lövdén, Sabine Schaefer, Florian Schmiedek, Yee Lee Shing, Markus Werkle-Bergner, and Ulman Lindenberger   

  1. Center for Lifespan Psychology, Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin, Germany
  • Received:2009-03-23 Revised:1900-01-01 Published:2009-11-30 Online:2009-11-30
  • Contact: Ulman Lindenberger;Shu-Chen

Abstract: Founded in 1981 by the late Paul B. Baltes, the Center for Lifespan Psychology at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development has helped to establish lifespan psychology as a distinct conceptual approach within developmental psychology. Since 2004, the Center has extended its research program into developmental behavioral neuroscience. Work at the Center is guided by three propositions: (i) to study lifespan changes in behavior as interactions among maturation, learning, and senescence; (ii) to develop theories and methods that integrate empirical evidence across domains of functioning, timescales, as well as behavioral and neuronal levels of analysis; (iii) to identify mechanisms of development by exploring age-graded differences in plasticity. The Center continues to pay special attention to the age periods of late adulthood and old age, which offer unique opportunities for innovation, both in theory and practice. At the same time, it has intensified its interest in early periods of ontogeny including infancy and early childhood. In this article we report recent findings from four research projects focusing on sensory and cognitive development at behavioral and neural levels of analysis.

Key words: The Center of Lifespan Psychology at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, conceptual agenda, research activities, late adulthood and old age