The production of this volume was prompted by the international research conference on anxiety disorders in children and adolescents, held in Leiden, The Netherlands, May 15 and May 16, 1997, under the auspices of Curium, Academic Centre of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Leiden University, the Section of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Netherlands Psychiatric Association, and the Netherlands Institute for Postgraduate Studies. With the exception of chapters 1, 5, 11, and 15, the chapters in this volume began as papers presented at the conference. Each of these however has been extensively revised or fully rewritten, partly in response to feedback from the editors. The other chapters were specially invited contributions (except for chapter 1 which was written by the editors) intended to balance the thematic organization of the book.
As the programme committee for the conference and the editors of this volume, it was a privilege for us to work with such a distinguished group of scholars. In our view, each contributor successfully met the challenge of analysing and synthesizing the particular literature relevant to their chapter. As a consequence, each chapter represents an excellent treatise of a topical area. As a corpus of work, the volume thus provides for a thorough and complete summary of current issues and perspectives about anxiety disorders in children, and therefore advances our understanding about anxious children.
We believe it is important and useful to have a volume that provides this type of integrative summary of the various literatures relevant to anxiety and its disorders in children and adolescents because these literatures have grown considerably in recent years. Because of this growth, it has become increasingly difficult to keep up with the knowledge base.