Leiden Consortium Individual Development

I am a principal investigator in the longitudinal neuroimaging twin-study Leiden Consortium Individual Development (L-CID), were we aim to answer questions such as: How do genes and environment influence the way a child develops? What role does the brain play in this? How do parents influence the way children grow up? And how can we foster children’s development?


L-CID is a longitudinal study including same-sex monozygotic and dizygotic twins of 500 families, which allows us to unravel the effects of genetics and shared environment on the development of brain and behavior. The study includes two cohorts: an early childhood cohort (ECC), aged 3-5 at the first wave, and a middle childhood cohort (MCC), aged 7-9 at the first wave. The last two waves of the ECC and the first two waves of the MCC overlap, resulting in a cohort-sequential design covering development between 3-14 years.

We specifically aim to get a better understanding of social competence and behavioral control using over 90 different measures per individual, using a multi-informant, multi-method, and multi-index approach. We also specifically test why some children are more responsive to their social environment than others, by examining a parental intervention. Ultimately, we want to improve young people’s well-being and learn which conditions are optimal for social development.


Interested in collaborating? A link to a meta-data file, describing all the L-CID measures can be found here. For collaborations, you can contact me at achterberg@essb.eur.nl 


A review paper, describing the most important findings so far which stem from the L-CID project so far, can be found here.

All peer-reviewed publications from the L-CID project can be found here (sort by project Leiden Consortium Individual Development).