Institutions and deinstitutionalization


History of Leadership in Developmental Disabilities: A Wiki Project

Uses Web and Wiki technology to collect, preserve, and share the history of leadership in the developmental disabilities field over the past 150 years, and pass on to future leaders the stories of how we got to where we are today. The project is creating an online history course and repository documenting the role of leadership and leaders in generating the ideas, movements, and programs that have been foundational to the developmental disabilities field, and using Wiki technology it will engage others in contributing to the multimedia content of the history course.

Staff: John D Westerman, Shawn C Lawler, Jerry W Smith

Collaborators: MENTOR Network Charitable Foundation

Normalization Principle and Wolf Wolfensberger Project, The

Produces a 56-minute (one-hour broadcast time slot) documentary on the work of Dr. Wolf Wolfensberger, an influential American academic and sometimes controversial leader in the reform of human services, particularly services to people with developmental disabilities. Through interviews with Dr. Wolfensberger and many of those he influenced beginning in the early 1970s, we will explore the Principle of Normalization, ideas that began the deinstitutionalization of people with disabilities, the concept of Social Role Valorization, citizen advocacy, and the history of services and perceptions of socially devalued people. Though Dr. Wolfensberger has had a long and distinguished career, this documentary will focus on his contributions of the 1960s and '70s, with particular emphasis on normalization. Phase 1 of this project occurred in October 2009 and include interviewing Wolf Wolfensberger and colleagues over four days in Syracuse, NY. Phase 2, to include additional interviews, research, script development, and production, is contingent upon funding.

Staff: Shawn C Lawler, Jerry W Smith