Taxonomy term


The Clinical Affective Neuroscience and Development Lab (CANDLab) conducts research on the roles of early experiences, stress, and neurodevelopment during childhood and adolescence in risk for mental health disorders. We focus on generating and disseminating new knowledge, training the next generation of clinical and developmental psychological scientists, and shaping mental health and related policy on a broader scale.

We acknowledge that we are guests on the traditional territory and homelands of the Mohegan, Mashantucket Pequot, Eastern Pequot, Schaghticoke, Golden Hill Paugussett, Niantic, and the Quinnipiac and other Algonquian speaking peoples. Indigenous peoples and nations have made innumerable contributions to this region, for instance by stewarding the lands and waterways of what is now the state of Connecticut over countless generations. We honor and respect the enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous people and nations and this land.

In conducting our work, we are guided by the following values and commitments:


·  We aim to create a lab community that is welcoming and inclusive for everyone.

·  We are committed to supporting each other and celebrating each other’s successes.

·  Our science is inherently collaborative and benefits greatly from complementary strengths, perspectives, and skill sets among lab members. We value the opportunity to support each other’s work, and lab members are encouraged to be generous in sharing their skills, contributing to collective endeavors, as well as to be open to leaning on others.

·  We value and view individuals and families who participate in our research as an integral part of our community. 

·  Every member of the lab plays an important role in our research, and we value the opportunity to support the unique training goals of lab members at all stages of their journeys. Mentorship is provided across various levels of the lab, both formally and informally. We are passionate about supporting undergraduates in their training and exploration of research.

·  We seek constructive feedback on our work and recognize that it is a privilege to be in a space with colleagues who are generous with their ideas and feedback. We openly share feedback on each other’s work, and feedback from all members of the team is encouraged and valued. When we ask questions or provide input on each other’s work, it is in the service of bettering our science and ourselves as scholars.

·  We encourage open and respectful communication. Harassment of any type is not tolerated.

·  Conducting research on stress and trauma affects us all. We recognize that we all bring our own lived experiences to this work, which may include trauma, and we acknowledge that this can both enhance our compassion and insight, and also present personal challenges. We are committed to creating spaces for processing these challenges and encourage self-care in a broad variety of forms.

Diversity and Inclusion

·  We value and prioritize diverse identities, backgrounds, abilities, life experiences, and perspectives, and we strive to cultivate a lab culture in which everyone feels like they belong and can thrive as both scientists and people.

·  Our own lived experiences influence our perspectives and the ways we approach our science, and we encourage everyone to bring their whole selves to their work. We acknowledge and respect that this may happen at a different pace and to a different degree for everyone.

·  We acknowledge that systemic inequities mean that individuals from minoritized racial and ethnic backgrounds have been historically excluded from science and academia. We are committed to broadening the representation of individuals from historically excluded groups in our own science (as both participants and researchers on our team), and to engaging in actions that foster inclusion in science more broadly, including mentoring and supporting young scientists at all levels from historically excluded groups. We strongly encourage applications at the undergraduate, postgraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral level from candidates from historically underrepresented groups and from candidates who are committed to building an inclusive academic environment.

·  We are committed to reflecting on our own positionality in our research and to considering how who has (and does not have) a seat at the table influences the science and knowledge we produce.

·  We recognize that biases and racism operate at individual, institutional, and systemic levels. We are committed to reflecting on our own biases and roles in perpetuating systems of oppression, as well as to working for broader change to dismantle structural barriers at the institutional and systemic levels.

Equity and Justice

·  We are committed to promoting equity and justice through our work and in our daily lives.

·  We recognize that it is an immense privilege to partner with the individuals, families, and communities in the broader New Haven area who participate in our research. We are committed to conducting research that has the potential to benefit the communities who participate in our studies, and to continually working to engage in practices that promote collaborative and equitable partnership throughout the research process.

·  We aim to expand the reach of our work outside of academia to have a positive impact on society. 

·  We are committed to disseminating knowledge, making our science accessible, and communicating with the public and policymakers. We routinely engage in discussions and deliver talks in the community (e.g., at local schools), and lab members are encouraged to engage in science communication and advocacy (see Op-Eds and For the Public).


·  The ultimate goal of our research is to reduce human suffering and to improve mental health and wellbeing.

·  We are dedicated to translating our research to inform clinical practice, including early identification of risk and optimizing treatments.

·  While we aim to inform clinical practice and policy, we are also committed to recognizing the limitations of our work and communicating responsibly about its implications.

·  We recognize that psychological science has been used to uphold and reify oppressive narratives and structures. We are dedicated to not only understanding, but also combating, this harmful history and the potential for ongoing harm. As part of this work, we are committed to critically examining our own research and field and to challenging existing paradigms that contribute to harm.

·  We are committed to carrying out our research with rigor, care, and integrity.

·  We are committed to continuing to increase our knowledge and use of open science practices. We have moved toward publicly sharing our materials, data, and code on OSF and on the lab’s github repository.