In the first conference in this series we brought together researchers on brain development with those from infant psychology to discuss the normal functional development of the brain. In this second conference in the series proposed here we will shift attention to the ways in which functional brain development can go wrong. Specially, we will shift attention to the ways in which functional brain development can go wrong. Specifically, we will bring together scientists with a clinical interest in abnormal development and the effects of early brain damage, with theoreticians interested in modelling the processes underlying functional brain development.
By bringing these two groups together we hope to interest the theoreticians in modelling process of abnormal, as well as normal development, and to inform those studying developmental disorders about theoretical models that may help us to a deeper understanding of these problems. The following topics will be reviewed: relationships between cortical functional specialisation and regional heterochrony of maturation; interactions between subcortical and cortical development; evidence for pre-specified cortical specialisation; abnormal cortical specialisation and functional brain plasticity; development of frontal cortex functions and of interhemispheric co-ordination (cortical and subcortical pathways), models of cortical functioning.