Bio-X SIGF Graduate Student Fellow

Awarded in 2006
Home Department: Neurosciences, Medicine
Faculty Advisor: William Newsome (Neurobiology)

Research Title: Neural basis of value-based decision making

Research Description: When we make decisions, we must consider both the costs and benefits associated with each choice. In the world of economics, this problem is often solved by reducing costs and benefits to a common currency, namely money. The Newsome laboratory believes the brain may solve the problem similarly by representing benefit, cost, and net value as discrete neural signals. To test this, they were making economic offers to monkeys while they recorded from or manipulated the activity of neurons that may have underlied the animals' decision to accept or reject their offers. Daniel's aim was to garner results that would shed light on how the brain represents value and uses this information to make decisions.


Daniel is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at Columbia University, where he studies the neural basis of abstraction and generalization in humans using a combination of human behavior, functional brain imaging, and computational modeling.