Dad’s the word: The importance of the father (and father-figures) in a child’s psychosocial, behavioural and cognitive development at ages 2 and 4.5 years.
Publication Date
Lead Organisation
Growing Up in New Zealand
Lead Researcher
Karen Waldie
Access Type
Primary Classification
Family and Whanau
Secondary Classification
Psych and Cog
The role of the father in promoting healthy child development is becoming increasingly highlighted among research psychologists. Both the presence and engagement of a father (or father-figure) with regard to child-rearing and play has been shown to influence the offspring’s behaviour, cognition and socioemotional outcomes. There remains a distinct lack of longitudinal investigations into the nature of this paternal influence. The current set of studies will use Growing Up in NZ data to understand the family (notably fathers) factors and sociodemographic influences that promote and hinder socioemotional, behavioural and cognitive functioning in the Growing Up in NZ cohort.