Neuroscience of Decision Making

Edited by Oshin Vartanian, David R. Mandel

© 2011 – Psychology Press

368 pages

Purchasing Options:
Hardback: 9781841694894
pub: 2011-03-11
US Dollars$89.00
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About the Book

The intersection between the fields of behavioral decision research and neuroscience has proved to be fertile ground for interdisciplinary research. Whereas the former is rich in formalized models of choice, the latter is rife with techniques for testing behavioral models at the brain level. As a result, there has been the rapid emergence of progressively more sophisticated biological models of choice, geared toward the development of ever more complete mechanistic models of behavior.

This volume provides a coherent framework for distilling some of the key themes that have emerged as a function of this research program, and highlights what we have learned about judgment and decision making as a result. Although topics that are theoretically relevant to judgment and decision making researchers are addressed, the book also ventures somewhat beyond the traditional boundaries of this area to tackle themes that would of interest to a greater community of scholars.

Neuroscience of Decision Making provides contemporary and essential reading for researchers and students of cognitive psychology, neuroscience, philosophy, and economics.

Reviews

"A technical volume at the intersection between the fields of behavioural decision research and neuroscience, providing a framework to distil theoretical models." - Network review

"Few areas of neuroscience research have progressed so rapidly – and with such diversity of topic and method – as the study of how we make decisions. Vartanian and Mandel have brought together a remarkable collection of leading scientists working at the intersection of decision and cognitive neuroscience. The resulting volume will undoubtedly help shape the next generation of researchers in this exciting field." -Scott Huettel, Ph.D., Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, Duke University, USA

"Work in the neurosciences, not so long ago, had little relevance to theory and research on decision making. The Neuroscience of Decision Making shows how quickly things have changed – and changed for the better. This outstanding volume provides a state of the art summary of work in the field and a blueprint for its future. The diversity of approaches, models, and study species, along with the list of distinguished contributors, makes this must reading for serious students and scholars interested in the mechanisms and processes underlying the sometimes puzzling and sometimes erudite decisions people make everyday." - John T. Cacioppo, Tiffany and Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor, The University of Chicago, USA

"This book is a welcome bridge between behavioral and neuroscience research, spanning the fascinating topic of decision making. The authors have accomplished an impressive feat in thoughtfully organizing and interpreting newly emerging research. This is the book to read if you want to understand the neuroscience of decision making." -Valerie F. Reyna, Ph.D., Co-Director of the Center for Behavioral Economics and Decision Research, Cornell University, USA

"This book assembles contributions that break new ground in the neurospychology of decision-making that address fundamental issues such as the role of emotions, dual systems and reward/loss processing in decision-making, as well as new topics such as planning and creativity. Introduced by sophisticated chapters on cognitive and neural architecture and the neuropsychological bases of context effects on choice, the collection comprises a rich and satisfying set of perspectives from neuroscience, psychology and economics." - Denis Hilton, Ph.D., Université de Toulouse-II, France

Table of Contents

O. Vartanian, D.R. Mandel, Introduction. Part 1. Theoretical Models. M. Sigman, S. Dehaene, Why Does it Take Time to Make a Decision? The Role of a Global Workspace in Simple Decision Making. D.R. Mandel, O.Vartanian, Frames, Brains, and Content Domains: Neural and Behavioral Effects of Descriptive Context on Preferential Choice. Part 2. Risk and Uncertainty. A. Bechara, Human Emotions in Decision Making: Are they Useful or Disruptive? A.J. Yu, Uncertainty and Neuromodulation: Focus on Acetylcholine and Sustained Attention. W. De Neys, V. Goel, Heuristics and Biases in the Brain: Dual Neural Pathways for Decision Making. Part 3. Reward and Loss. M.R. Delgado, E. Tricomi, Reward Processing and Decision Making in the Human Striatum. J.P. O’Doherty, Neural Mechanisms Underlying Reward and Punishment Learning in the Human Brain: Insights from fMRI. D.A. Pizzagalli, D.G. Dillon, R. Bogdan, A.J. Holmes, Reward and Punishment Processing in the Human Brain: Clues from Affective Neuroscience and Implications for Depression Research. Part 4. Cooperation and Trust. A.G. Sanfey, J.K. Rilling, Neural Bases of Social Decision Making. D. Houser, R. Kurzban, E. Xiao, Social and Biological Evidence on Motives for Punishment. Part 5. Goal-directed Decision Making. K. Christoff, A. Gordon, R. Smith, The Role of Spontaneous Thought in Human Cognition. J. Moll, J. Grafman, Well, What Do You Want To Do? A Cognitive Neuroscience View of Plan Decision Making. O. Vartanian, Decision Junctures in the Creative Process.

About the Editors

Oshin Vartanian obtained his Ph.D. in experimental psychology at the University of Maine, followed by postdoctoral fellowships in cognitive neuroscience at York University and DRDC Toronto, where he is currently a Defence Scientist. He is the recipient of the Daniel E. Berlyne Award from the American Psychological Association’s Division 10 for outstanding research by a junior researcher, and holds an Adjunct Assistant Professor position in the Department of Psychology at the University of Toronto—Scarborough.

David R. Mandel is an adjunct professor of psychology at University of Toronto and a senior defence scientist at DRDC Toronto, where he heads the Thinking, Risk, and Intelligence Group. His areas of research interest include thinking and reasoning, judgment and decision making, and the application of behavioural science to issues in realm of the defence and security. He is the lead editor of The Psychology of Counterfactual Thinking published by Routledge/Taylor & Francis.

About the Series

Contemporary Topics in Cognitive Neuroscience

Reflecting contemporary and controversial issues in the study of cognitive neuroscience, the series aims to present a multi-disciplinary forum for cutting edge debate that will help shape this burgeoning discipline. It offers leading figures in the field and the best new researchers an opportunity to showcase their own work, expand on their own theories and place these in the wider context of the field.

Titles in the series may be authored or edited; each book must aim to make a contribution to a specific topic by reviewing and synthesising the existing research literature, by advancing theory in the area, or by some combination of these missions.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSY008000
PSYCHOLOGY / Cognitive Psychology