The Young Adult Alcohol & Health Collaborative consists of faculty and student researchers at the Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies in the Brown University School of Public Health. We are united by interest in the psychological, social, and environmental conditions of the developmental period spanning adolescence and young adulthood, and their implications for health.

During adolescence and young adulthood, the brain is maturing, peer and media influences increase, and individuals experience important transitions related to school, work, and intimate partners. Also during this period, habits and patterns of health behaviors become established. Risk and protective factors interact as young people grow and develop. For example, temperament and attitudes and experience shape drinking and smoking and other drug use, which are further shaped by peer groups and social/cultural norms. In part because health behaviors are still largely “under construction” during this time in development, we are able to study causes and consequences from complementary developmental and socio-ecological perspectives. We seek such an understanding to inform health promotion and prevention efforts.

Research projects led by Drs. Kate Carey, Jennifer Merrill, and Angelo DiBello are supported by external and internal funding. Ongoing studies provide opportunities for research training for graduate and undergraduate students as well as post-graduate trainees.