Within WP1, a group of 4 Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) will receive a comprehensive training focused on delivering cutting-edge scientific research. Each ESR will work on an individual research project related to the dynamics of early social interactions. In WP1 we will conduct a series of studies shining new light on the very nature of social interaction in early childhood, using innovative brain and behavioral approaches. These studies will advance our understanding of brain mechanisms in social interaction, and help us define the microstructure of parent-child interaction at a level of detail far beyond the state of the art. ESR1 and ESR2 will use new dual eye tracking technologies and analyses to understand the role of gaze in social interaction. With this technology, the gaze patterns of two people (e.g. child – parent) can be simultaneously measured with high accuracy. Specifically, ESR1 will conduct a study of how global patterns of gaze during interaction develop over time in typical development and in ASD. ESR2, on the other hand, will study the fine-grained nature of gaze to others’ faces during parent-child interaction. ESR3 will conduct longitudinal dense sampling of motor and vocal coordination during parent-child interaction. ESR4 will focus on brain activity in infants during social interaction using state of the art EEG analysis.

WP1 leaders: prof. Sabine Hunnius (SKU) & dr Terje Falck-Ytter (UU/KI)

Individual ESR projects:

ESR1: Using new dual eye tracking technology to understand the relation between children’s gaze and their social environment. Supervisor: dr Terje Falck-Ytter (UU/KI), Co-Supervisor: dr Roy Hessels (UUtrecht), site: UU, Sweden.

ESR2: Fine-grained face-scanning patterns during parent-child interaction – a dual eye tracking approach. Supervisors: dr Roy Hessels, prof. Chantal Kemner (UUtrecht), Co-supervisor: dr Terje Falck-Ytter (UU/KI), site: UUtrecht, the Netherlands.

ESR3: Motor and vocal interpersonal coordination in infant-parent interactions – a longitudinal dense sampling study across contexts. Supervisors: dr Anna Anzulewicz (UniWaw), dr Przemysław Tomalski, dr Ewa Haman (UniWaw), site: UniWaw, Poland.

ESR4: Online analysis of brain oscillations and infants’ social interactions. Supervisors: prof. Sabine Hunnius (SKU), dr Robert Oostenveld (SKU) & prof. Emily Jones (BBK), site: SKU, the Netherlands.