Ronald E. Dahl

Ronald E. Dahl is the Director of the Institute of Human Development at the University of California, Berkeley, where he also serves as Professor in the School of Public Health and the Joint Medical Program and runs the Adolescent Research Collaborative.

He is the Chief Science Officer at the Center for the Developing Adolescent, where he provides the strategic vision for the Center’s research agenda. He is a pediatrician and developmental scientist with long-standing research interests in the development of sleep/arousal regulation, affect regulation and the development of behavioral and emotional disorders in children and adolescents. His current work focuses on adolescence as a developmental period with unique opportunities for early intervention in relation to a wide range of behavioral and emotional health problems. His research is interdisciplinary and bridges between basic developmental research (emphasizing social and affective neuroscience) and the translation of this work into clinical and social policy relevance. He has published extensively on child and adolescent development, sleep disorders, behavioral/emotional health in children, adolescent brain development, and on the policy implications of this work. He has been elected as a Fellow of several organizations including: Association for Psychological Science, American Academy of Pediatrics, New York Academy of Sciences, and American Academy of Sleep Medicine. He is a Founding Editor of the journal Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience and is President-Elect of the Society for Research in Child Development.

Current & Recent Postdoctoral Fellows

Megan Cherewick

Megan Cherewick is a postdoctoral fellow who completed her PhD in International Health from Johns Hopkins University.  Megan's research focuses on consequences of adversity and stress, adolescent cognitive and behavioral coping strategies and effects on mental health and well-being.  Megan's current research interests are how developmental neuroscience can inform psychosocial support and behavior change intervention strategies.  Megan's research seeks to identify key protective and promotive paths to improve mental health trajectories for adolescents.  Megan is particularly interested in the development and evaluation of psychosocial interventions to improve resilience among adolescents in low-resource settings and in the context of humanitarian emergencies.

LucĂ­a Magis Weinberg

Lucía Magis Weinberg is a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute of Human Development at the University of California at Berkeley, where she is investigating the relationship between learning and pubertal changes in early adolescence, with applied work in school settings. She originally trained as a medical doctor in her native México, at the National Autonomous University of México. Then she moved to the United Kingdom as a CONACyT (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología) scholar, where she completed her MSc and PhD in developmental cognitive neuroscience at University College London, where she investigated how behavior and the brain develop during adolescence. For her master’s project, she studied the impact of social influence on risk perception in children, adolescents, and adults, under the supervision of Prof. Sarah-Jayne Blakemore. Her focus was on how different contexts (such as social information or rewards) can influence adolescents’ ability to reason and remember, using behavioral experiments and neuroimaging tools. During her PhD, she worked under the supervision of Dr. Iroise Dumontheil and Dr. Ruud Custers. In the educational sphere, she has extensive experience as a tutor and mentor for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, promoting access to higher education in STEM as part of diverse organizations, including: The Brilliant Club, in2scienceUK, Science Clubs Mexico, and Women in STEM, Future Leaders of the US-México Foundation. She is Executive Editor and cofounder of NeuroMéxico, one of the leading Latin American science outreach websites. You can contact her at or on Twitter @luciamawe. You can also visit her website at

Alison (Allie) Giovanelli

Alison (Allie) Giovanelli is a postdoctoral fellow at UCSF in the Department of Pediatrics- Adolescent Medicine. She recently completed her PhD in child development and clinical psychology in the joint Developmental Psychopathology and Clinical Science program at the Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. Allie's doctoral research, which was largely directed by prior experience teaching kindergarten, focused on the impacts of early adversity and high quality early childhood intervention in a large longitudinal sample. A secondary research interest was the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions for youth with both internalizing and externalizing disorders and their parents in collaboration with a large capacity mental health organization. Allie has also been involved in translational research, and worked on a team in collaboration with the Minnesota Departments of Education, Health, and Human Services to develop and distribute a county-by-county report quantifying both risks to the healthy development of Minnesota's young children and services to address these needs. This led her to participate in the Doris Duke Fellowship for the Promotion of Child Well-Being through Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, an interdisciplinary fellowship supporting doctoral students in using research to affect change in policy and practice around maltreatment. More recently, she spent her doctoral internship year at Stanford Medical School/The Children's Health Council providing clinical services in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Currently, Allie's research at UCSF centers around approaching intervention and prevention efforts targeting adolescent health and well-being through a developmental lens, and effectively leveraging technology in these efforts.


Christine Su

Christine Su is the Project Manager for the Discover Learning Project based in Tanzania.  She has an MSW from the University of Michigan with a focus in global health, gender, and community-based interventions.  During her master’s program, she received a grant to investigate the intersection of race, class, and gender and its impact in accessing social services in the Roma population in Romania.  She went on to work in Ukraine on AIDS/HIV projects with key populations and orphans and vulnerable children in collaboration with PEPFAR and the CDC.  Her interests are in socio-emotional development, how to promote healthy sexual and reproductive trajectories in young adolescents and creating effective community-based interventions that can inform policy.

Collaborators at Other Institutions

University of California, Los Angeles

  • Andrew Fuligni, Professor in Residence, Developmental Psychology, Director – Adolescence, Ethnicity and Immigration Research Program
  • Adriana Galván, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology

University of California, Irvine

  • Elysia Davis, Assistant Professor, Psychiatry & Human Behavior, Director – Women and Children’s Health and Wellbeing Project

Johns Hopkins University

  • Robert Blum, Professor - Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health

Leiden University

  • Eveline Crone, Professor of Developmental and Educational Psychology

University of Pittsburgh

  • Jennifer Silk, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Director – Developmental Affective Science Collective
  • Cecile Ladouceur, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology
  • Erica Forbes, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Director – Affective Neuroscience and Developmental Psychopathology Laboratory
  • Neal Ryan, Joaquim Puig-Antich Professor in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Professor of Clinical and Translational Science
  • Peter Franzen, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry
  • Daniel Buysse, UPMC Endowed Chair in Sleep Medicine, Professor of Clinical and Translational Science
  • Daniel Shaw, Professor and Department Chair Department of Psychology

Florida International University 

  • Dana McMakin, Associate Professor of Clinical Science and Cognitive Neuroscience - Department of Psychology, Director - Remedy Research group 

National Institute of Mental Health

  • Daniel Pine, Chief Section on Development and Affective Neurosceince

University College London

  • Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, Professor, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience

University of Amsterdam

  • Reinout Wiers, Professor, Developmental Psycology

Emory University

  • Carol Worthman, Samuel Dandler Dobbs Professor of Anthropology

University of California, San Francisco

  • Kaja Lewinn, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

University of New Orleans

  • Elizabeth “Birdie” Shirtcliff, Associate Professor, Director – Applied Biopsychology

University of Oregon

  • Nicholas Allen, Professor, Department of Psychology
  • Jennifer Pfeifer, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology

University of Texas, Austin

  • David Yeager, Assistant Professor of Psychology

University of Zurich

  • Oskar Jenni, Professor, Director – Child Development Center