Using metaphor to translate the science of resilience and developmental outcomes

Nathaniel Kendall-Taylor, Abigail Haydon

Developmental scientists have used a variety of linguistic devices to communicate the science of resilience, but their effectiveness at improving understanding and expanding support for evidence-based social policies has not been empirically tested. We describe the process of developing, testing, and refining an Explanatory Metaphor to communicate the science of resilience to the public and policymakers. We argue that public understanding is key to bridging the research-to-practice divide and that communications is a social science endeavor in its own right that requires careful empirical research.

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