Scientific research and science-guided practice based on the promotion of an individual's strengths constitutes a radical shift in a new and growing area of study within the field of human development. Its trademark term is `positive youth development'. This approach to human development is based on the idea that, in addition to preventing problems, science and practice should promote the development of competencies, skills, and motivation in order to enhance individuals' developmental pathways. Approaches to Positive Youth Development is based on this concept and brings together authors from across Europe and America who are leaders in their respective fields. The main focus of the book, beyond a clarification of the paradigmatic foundations, concerns the major contexts of adolescents and young adults, namely, neighborhoods and leisure locales, school and family, and the major themes of healthy psychosocial development, namely, competences and knowledge, prosocial behavior, transcending problems of delinquency, civic engagement, identity, agency, and spirituality.
Chapter One: Approaches to Positive Youth Development: A View of the Issues
Approaches to Positive Youth Development: A View of the Issues
The ‘positive youth development’ (PYD) perspective is an orientation to young people that has arisen because of interest among developmental scientists in using developmental systems, or dynamic, models of human behaviour and development for understanding (1) the plasticity of human development and (2) the importance of relations between individuals and their real-world ecological settings as bases of variation in the course of human development (Lerner, 2005). The PYD perspective has arisen as well through the development and, in some cases, the evaluation of interventions designed and delivered within community-based, youth serving programs that have worked to counter what have been seen as ...