General conclusion – Representing development: the social construction of models of change
Any science is based upon a core set of assumptions that are presented through a complex of social representations. These set up the general vision of the world, i.e. the set of axioms on which the whole of the inquiry is further pursued (Branco & Valsiner, 1997). Developmental Science is no exception to this. Yet it has a special place, as it has questioned the social representations systems about the phenomenon of instability over time, i.e. change, within the societies in which it emerged. Social representations, as a general rule, try to make familiar the unfamiliar by turning unstable phenomena into a series of static forms, i.e. assimilating novelty within already existing structures.