• Article

Early childhood development The foundation of sustainable development

Momentum for improving early childhood development has grown since The Lancet published the landmark Series, Child Development in Developing Countries in 2007, followed by Child Development in Developing Countries 2 in 2011. As shown in this new Series, Advancing Early Childhood Development: from Science to Scale,1–3 between 2000 and 2015 the number of scientific publications on topics central to early childhood development increased substantially, about a third of countries had adopted multisectoral policies on early childhood development, and there has been an increase in funding for early childhood development.1 Yet, few countries have institutionalised mechanisms to implement these policies, services remain fragmented and of variable quality, and programmes at scale are rare and poorly evaluated. Compelling new evidence in two areas strengthens our resolve to act to reach pregnant women and young children with holistic early childhood development services.


Daelmans, B., Darmstadt, G. L., Lombardi, J., Black, M. M., Britto, P. R., Lye, S., ... Lancet Early Childhood Development (2017). Early childhood development: The foundation of sustainable development. Lancet, 389(10064), 9-11. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)31659-2