Paul Zak is a pioneer in this nascent field of neuroeconomics. In a recent paper published in the journal PLoS One, he examined genes that may predict success among traders on Wall Street. His forthcoming book, “The Moral Molecule,” will explore how a chemical in the brain called oxytocin compels cooperation in society.
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Jeff Hawkins on how brain science will change computing
Treo creator Jeff Hawkins urges us to take a new look at the brain — to see it not as a fast processor, but as a memory system that stores and plays back experiences to help us predict, intelligently, what will happen next.
The Brain Science Behind Lin-Sanity
Experts who study sports psychology say Lin has performed another remarkable feat — blocking out outside pressures to allow his athletic skills to shine.
“How we think about whether we are going to succeed or fail changes whether or not our brain supports our skills,” said Sian Beilock, author of the book “ “Choke: What the Secrets of the Brain Reveal About Getting It Right When You Have To” ” and a psychology professor at the University of Chicago. “Focusing on what you want to achieve rather than why you’ve failed in the past prepares you to perform at your best. When you are focused on failing, often times you try to control every aspect of what you are doing. You essentially screw yourself up.”
“Neurolaw” - A meeting of the minds on brain and law
This emerging area of work was coined “neurolaw” in 1991, and has been bringing together interdisciplinary teams of neuroscientists, scholars, lawyers and judges to explore and deliberate where the science of the brain and the principles of justice intersect. As the understanding of the brain becomes greater, many new questions with potentially game-changing answers arise. How can assemblies of brain cells and the inter-actions between them lead to notions of guilt and punishment? What is the role of our genes and our brains in the courtroom? Will neuroscience change how we feel about criminal responsibility? How is eyewitness testimony affected by aging, neurologic and psychiatric conditions? What can courts and other justice system participants learn from neuroscience to improve eyewitness reliability, including lineup procedures, jury instructions and the use of expert witnesses? How does popular culture affect public perceptions of the meaning of moral and legal responsibility? The answers to these questions, and many more, have great potential to influence how we, as a society, deliver justice and punishment.