The impacts of changed living conditions on child and adolescent mental health
This research programme will study how changed living conditions affect the mental health of children and adolescents. It is financed by Forte and is a collaboration between Centre for Research on Child and Adolescent Mental Health at Karlstad university and the Department of Education and Special Education at the University of Gothenburg.
During the last decades profound changes have taken place in the Swedish society, in the family structure, the school system, the labour market and in other sectors. The population structure among the younger age cohorts has also changed due to migration. To what extent and in what ways the societal changes have affected child and adolescent mental health is still not known.
How changes affect mental health
The aim of the program is to investigate how changes in early life conditions affect children’s and young people’s mental health. The program comprises two tracks:
A. Comparative analyses of societal changes and mental health trends within and between countries addressing two research questions:
- Which changes and differences in societal conditions may explain adolescent mental health trends within and between countries?
- Which changes and differences in societal conditions may explain adolescent mental health trends within and between municipalities and schools in Sweden?
B. Multilevel analyses of how changes in early life living conditions affect the mental health of children and young people, addressing the following research questions:
- Which are the causal effects of stress exposure in the school/family on mental health, and how are these effects affected by socio-demographic individual and family variables such as gender, age, country of birth, SES; personal resources and characteristics such as cognition, self-esteem, self-efficacy; social resources and factors such as school climate, social capital, and the neighbourhood; and the societal context at different points in time?
Education and mental health
We will also analyse the reciprocal causal relationships between academic achievement and mental health, and how these relationships are affected by individual, family and contextual variables. The program is in collaboration between the Centre for Research on Child and Adolescent Mental Health at Karlstad University and the Department of Education and Special Education at the University of Gothenburg.