Motivation and Cognitive Control  book cover
1st Edition

Motivation and Cognitive Control

Edited By

Todd S. Braver

ISBN 9781848726468
Published December 22, 2015 by Routledge
400 Pages

USD $72.95

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Book Description

Individuals do not always perform to their full capability on cognitive tasks. When this occurs, the usual explanation is that the individual was not properly motivated. But this begs the important question: How and why does motivation interact with and influence cognitive processing and the control processes that regulate it? What are the underlying mechanisms that govern such interactions? Motivation has been an important component of psychology and neuroscience throughout the history of the field, but has recently been rejuvenated by rapidly accelerating research interest in the nature of motivation-cognition interactions, particularly as they impact control processes and goal-directed behavior.

This volume provides an up-to-date snapshot of the state of research in this exciting, expanding area. The contributors to the volume are internationally-renowned researchers that lead the field in conducting groundbreaking studies. Moreover, they represent a variety of research perspectives and traditions: cognitive psychology and neuroscience, animal learning, social, affective, and personality psychology, and development, lifespan, and aging studies. This book summarizes our current state of understanding of the relationship between motivation and cognitive control, and serves as an essential reference for both students and researchers.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Todd Braver

Motivation and cognitive control

Rewards, Cognitive Processing and Goal-Directed Control

Chapter 2. Marcus Rothkirch and Philippe Sterzer

The role of motivation in visual information processing

Chapter 3. Brian Anderson and Anthony Sali

The impact of reward on attention: Beyond Motivation

Chapter 4. Ruth Krebs, Jens-Max Hopf and Carsten Boehler

Within-trial effects of stimulus-reward associations

Chapter 5. Mauricio Delgado, Susan Ravizza and Anthony Porcelli

Motivational influences on cognitive control: The role of reward processing

Chapter 6. Wim Notebaert and Senne Braem

Parsing the effects of reward on cognitive control

Chapter 7. Sanne de Wit and Anthony Dickinson

Ideomotor mechanisms of goal-directed behavior

Affect, Conflict and Self-Regulation

Chapter 8. Hans Marien, Henk Aarts and Ruud Custers

How goals control behavior: The role of action-outcome and reward information

Chapter 9. Philip Gable, Lauren Browning and Eddie Harmon-Jones

Affect, motivation, and cognitive scope

Chapter 10. Gesine Dreisbach and Rico Fischer

Conflicts as aversive signals: Motivation for control adaptation in the service of affect regulation

Chapter 11. Blair Saunders and Michael Inzlicht

Vigor and fatigue: How variation in affect underlies effective self-control

Chapter 12. Clay Holroyd

The waste disposal problem of effortful control 

Age-related changes in cognitive motivation

Chapter 13. BJ Casey and Adriana Galvan

The teen brain: "Arrested development" in resisting temptation

Chapter 14. Shu-Chen Li and Ben Eppinger

Lifespan development of adaptive neurocognitive representations: Reciprocal interactions between cognition and motivation

Chapter 15. Todd Maddox, Marissa Gorlick and Darrell Worthy

Towards a three-factor motivation-learning framework in normal aging

Chapter 16. Thomas Hess and Brian Smith

Linkages between age-related changes in the costs of cognitive engagement, motivation, and behavior

Chapter 17. Ishabel Vicaria and Derek Isaacowitz

Age-related changes in motivation: Do they influence emotional experience across adulthood and old age?

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Todd S. Braver, PhD, is a professor of psychology, neuroscience, and radiology at Washington University, St. Louis, where he has been since 1998. His educational training includes a BS in cognitive science from the University of California, San Diego, in 1992, and a PhD in cognitive neuroscience from Carnegie Mellon University in 1997. Dr. Braver codirects (with colleague Dr. Deanna Barch) the Cognitive Control and Psychopathology Laboratory at Washington University. His research uses convergent cognitive neuroscience methods to investigate the neural mechanisms of cognitive control processes. A particular focus is the function of the prefrontal cortex and its interaction with related brain systems in higher cognition, emotion, motivation, personality, and aging. Dr. Braver has authored over 100 peer-reviewed articles in some of the premier outlets of his field, including Science, Nature, PNAS, Neuron, and Nature Neuroscience. His research has been continuously funded by the NIH (NIMH, NIA, NIDA), NSF, ONR and private foundations through current and prior grants totaling over $12 million. Dr. Braver has received honors and awards for his research, including being named a McGuigan Young Investigator, an APS Fellow, and NIMH MERIT awardee.


In Motivation and Cognitive Control edited by Todd Braver, excellent psychologists tackle the diverse ways in which motivation influences cognition, while in turn cognition regulates motivation. Altogether, this is a comprehensive handbook for anyone interested in motivation-cognition interactions.

Kent Berridge, James Olds Collegiate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Michigan

While usually studied separately, motivation and cognition are often inextricably intertwined. This book showcases evidence for these interactions across an array of psychological phenomena, constructs, and neural mechanisms from first-rate contributors to this expanding field.

Michael J Frank, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Laboratory for Neural Computation and Cognition, Brown University

The issue of motivation has recently come to center stage in research on cognitive control. Braver, a leading researcher at the intersection of these two topics, brings together an interdisciplinary set of experts who view the control-motivation interface from diverse but complementary perspectives. Together, their contributions provide both a snapshot of current research and a roadmap for further investigation.

Matthew Botvinick, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, Princeton Neuroscience Institute and Department of Psychology, Princeton University

This is a fantastic compilation of research on motivation and cognitive control. It spans a wide spectrum of topics, from the role of motivation on vision and attention to broader conceptualizations of the importance of motivation to cognition and self-regulation. There was a time when researchers of cognition could ignore motivation, and vice versa. That is definitely no longer the case, and this volume of contributed chapters provides an excellent compendium for investigators aiming at understanding their interdependency.

Luiz Pessoa, Professor of Psychology and Director of the Maryland Neuroimaging Center, University of Maryland, College Park

Braver has brought together a very dense body of literature via highly sophisticated researchers... Academic practitioners of cognitive neuroscience will find the novel insights here as state of the art and fascinating... A wonderful but dense look into a subject that will fascinate many."

Roy Sugarman, PhD, Director: Applied Neuroscience, Perforamnce INnovation Team, EXOS USA, Metapsychology Online Reviews