If you could do one thing – the most important thing – to influence the life of a young child, what would that be (it’s likely not what you first bring to mind)? We want to improve the wellbeing of children – our own, in our community, and in the world, so thinking globally about this question is vital.
Tom Weisner is an emeritus professor of anthropology and psychiatry at UCLA. He studies and teaches about culture and human development; families and children at risk; and evidence-informed policies to improve the lives of children and families. He has done research in Kenya on the effects on children and parents of rural-urban migration; in Delhi, India on families and children with autism; supports for working poor families in Wisconsin; families with children with disabilities in Los Angeles; hippie and countercultural families and children in California; sibling caretaking and education in Hawaii; non-parental and sibling caretaking around the world; and gratitude and school achievement among Latino adolescents and families in Los Angeles. He has served on the Board of the NGO ChildFund International. He went to Reed College (BA) and Harvard (PhD). He is married to Susan Meade Weisner, and has two sons and four beautiful grandchildren.