Antisocial behavior refers to aggression, rule-breaking, theft, violence, crime, and substance use. It is extremely costly in terms of the harm caused to individuals (e.g., victims and families) and communities (e.g., schools and neighborhoods), as well as to society through financial burdens associated with healthcare and justice services. We study risk factors for antisocial behavior beginning in early childhood. A significant portion of work in the lab is dedicated to understanding how the development of empathy, prosociality, guilt, and conscience can go awry (defined as “callous-unemotional traits”) and how knowledge of callous-unemotional traits can inform our measurement and understanding of risk for antisocial behavior. In addition, we want to understand how interventions and treatments for antisocial behavior can be made more effective and tailored when children have callous-unemotional traits.
- Waller, R., Hyde, L.W., Grabell, A., Alves, M., & Olson, S.L. (2015). Differential Associations of Early Callous-Unemotional, ODD, and ADHD Behaviors: Multiple Domains Within Early-Starting Conduct Problems? Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 56, 657–666
- Baskin-Sommers, A.R., Waller, R., Fish, A.M. et al. Callous-Unemotional Traits Trajectories Interact with Earlier Conduct Problems and Executive Control to Predict Violence and Substance Use Among High Risk Male Adolescents. J Abnorm Child Psychol 43, 1529–1541 (2015).
- Wilkinson, S., Waller, R., & Viding, E. (2016). Involving Young People with Callous Unemotional Traits in Treatment: Does It Work? A Systematic and Narrative Review. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 57, 552-565