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Early Intervention and Evidence-Based Policy and Practice: Framing and taming

  • Rosalind Edwards (a1), Val Gillies (a2) and Nicola Horsley (a3)

In this article, we highlight some critical matters in the way that an issue is framed as a problem in policymaking and the consequent means of taming that problem, in focussing on the use and implications of neuroscientific discourse of brain claims in early intervention policy and practice. We draw on three sets of analyses: of the contradictory set of motifs framing the state of ‘evidence’ of what works in intervention in the early years; of the (mis)use of neuroscientific discourse to frame deficient parenting as causing inequalities and support particular policy directions; and of the way that early years practitioners adopt brain claims to tame the problem of deficient parenting. We argue that using expedient brain claims as a framing and taming justification is entrenching gendered and classed understandings and inequalities.

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G. Wall (2010) ‘Mothers’ experiences with intensive parenting and brain development discourse’, Women's Studies International Forum, 33, 3, 253–63.

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Social Policy and Society
  • ISSN: 1474-7464
  • EISSN: 1475-3073
  • URL: /core/journals/social-policy-and-society
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