Cultivating Prosocial Development Across the Lifespan: Contexts, Relationships, and Contemplative Practices
Garrison, New York
Application period: Monday, December 2, 2019 – Friday, January 24, 2020
Summer Research Institute: Monday, June 8 – Sunday, June 14, 2020
In the face of pressing ecological, economic, social, and political challenges, the world stands in need of a social systems renewal. We need individuals and communities that are educated and skilled in virtuous habits of the mind (e.g., awareness), the heart (e.g., compassion), and the body (e.g., engagement) to address the global challenges of our times.
How can virtuous prosocial qualities and behaviors such as trust, cooperation, empathy, kindness, compassion, forgiveness, truth-seeking, and reparation-making be cultivated in individuals, families, schools, and communities such that we support generations of people in becoming agents of positive change in the world today? The future of our planet, and all its inhabitants, depends on our collective ability to answer this question in ways that are compassionate and inclusive, evidence-based, practical, and immediate, as well as culturally and developmentally diverse.
SRI 2020 is an exploration of prosocial development across the lifespan of individuals and within communities, and of how history, social contexts, relationships, and contemplative practices all play key roles in such development. Integrating academic, contemplative, and artistic knowledge and wisdom, we will address how the development of prosocial qualities can be promoted at different stages of life––from infancy and childhood to adolescence, and from early adulthood to old age––and in different cultural-historical situations, through the use of contemplative practices, educational and social programs, community-building and activism, and systems reform.