, Volume 34, Issue 4, pp 480-486
Date: 25 Jul 2006

Prevention of Youth Violence: Why not Start at the Beginning?

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“He who considers things in their first growth and origin … will obtain the clearest view of them.”


The product of an applied science is as good as the knowledge that gets into the hands of those who do not produce the science. From this perspective, I applaud the National Institutes of Health's initiative to ask eminent scientists at the periphery of violence research to report on the state of knowledge for violence prevention. The NIH (2004) report provides to “prevention of violence” scientists a description of how the science is perceived by scientists not directly involved. Two other panels would have been most useful, one made up of practitioners in the field of violence prevention, and another from the general public. The advantage of the scientific panel is that they can criticize the type of science we have been doing. Their criticism should be taken seriously. I certainly share many: the lack of a common language, the lack of genetic and brain research to understand youth vio ...