Laboratory for Social and Neural Systems Research
Our group is interested in the neural basis of economic and social decision making, reinforcement learning, moral behavior and emotion. We primarily study humans but our approach is also informed by single cell recordings in animals.
Keywords: Neuroeconomics, social neuroscience, neuroimaging, value, risk, reward, punishment
1 professor, 3 postdoctoral fellows, 6 PhD students, 1 administrator
Rewards and punishments elicit approach and avoidance behavior and learning and lead to positive and negative emotions. Moreover, they constitute the objects of economic decisions but can also be a consequence of non-economic decisions. Our previous research has elucidated the neural correlates of reward parameters that play a central role in economic and finance theory. These findings included reflections of reward magnitude, probability and risk in the firing of single dopamine neurons and in blood oxygenation signals of the striatum and prefrontal cortex.
One of our current projects is to study moral decision making and learning of moral value. In particular we ask, whether there are commonalities between economic and moral value processing and investigate both group effects and individual differences.
We continue to study the neurobiological basis of economic and social decision making and learning and aim to broaden the range of biological correlates investigated.
Currently we primarily employ functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and behavioral methods.
Equipment: The Laboratory for Social and Neural Systems Research is equipped with a 3Tesla scanner for fMRI, facilities for transcranial magnetic and direct current electrical stimulation, a multi-subject behavioral lab and electroencephalography.
BOEC0120 Introduction to Neuroeconomics and Social Neurosciences
Swiss National Science Foundation, UZH Research Priority Program "Foundations of Human Social Behaviour", Economic and Social Research Council
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